Friday, August 30, 2019
The Mourning Fan, or Meanwhile and Elsewhere is a little known book by Edward Gorey that until now has only appeared in the literary omnibus Antaeus in1990. The story consists of thirty verses, each accompanied by a small fan shaped drawing. The book was intended to be Mr. Gorey's third miniature book, but was never published as a stand alone volume in his lifetime.
Aredian Press has issued the of The Mourning Fan in a Deluxe Miniature Limited Edition of 26 copies (lettered A-Z), plus 3 out of sequence copies. Each meticulously crafted book is hand made and comes housed in a custom clam shell box. These exquisite volumes feature individualized touches to the beading on the covers, making each copy in the series unique.
The book has been beautifully produced, with the type for each of the verses set to mimic the fan shaped illustrations. For more information about this special edition, go to: https://aredian.co/work/#press
Tuesday, August 20, 2019
The Broken Spoke by Edward Gorey was published in 1976 by Dodd, Mead and Co. Before its publication, selections from the book's 30 drawings were published as a six page spread in the June 1976 issue of Sports Illustrated magazine.
For the 1979 exhibition, Edward Gorey decided to offer artwork from The Broken Spoke rather than create new works specifically for the gallery show. After the exhibition, unsold Broken Spoke pieces
remained in his archive until the art was sold by Gotham Book Mart in the early 2000's.
All of the images created for The Broken Spoke depict various aspects of bicycles and cycling. The conceit of the project is that all of the images are postcards supposedly drawn by Dogear Wryde, the nom de plume Mr. Gorey used when creating post card images.
A recent addition to my collection is a piece of original artwork from The Broken Spoke. This skillfully rendered piece is titled, "Apparition of demon cyclist that appeared in the sky over Gasket, Maine several times during the second week in November, 1911". Edward Gorey would often sign, but not date illustration art for his commercial work. When Mr. Gorey did date his work, it is an indication that the piece was created for one of his own publications. At first glance, the dates are cryptic until one figures out his dating system.
Sunday, July 28, 2019
Edward Gorey went to movies. A lot of movies. All kinds of movies. He both loved to watch and playfully disparage films and the people who made them. In what can only be called a stroke of genius, someone at the Soho Weekly News gave Mr. Gorey an official platform to write about the movies he was going to see. He penned a number of movie reviews in 1974 for the publication under the anagrammatic nom de plume Wardore Edgy.
Mr. Gorey threw himself into the task with gleeful abandon. He even created an illustration for the column wherein the "critic" is lounging in a movie theater watching a thriller, his sneaker clad feet extending into the next row and his oversized fur coat casually tossed over a nearby seat.
The reviews read like a one sided phone conversation at two in the morning with an over caffeinated dandy. Most reviewers temper criticism with praise. Mr. Edgy has no such scruples and goes for the throat nine out of ten times. The reviews are chatty, catty, and occasionally non linear in thought, so eager is Mr. Edgy to move on to his next victim. The results are hilarious, and could change the way you look at some revered filmmakers and movie stars. The reviews are also written with the affection of someone who truly loves movies and can't wait to finish typing so he can head out to a theater.
The scan of this review was sent to me by a fellow collector from New York. Copies of the Soho Weekly News can be difficult to locate as it was a small localized New York City publication. The first issue was published October 11, 1973 and the final issue was dated March 10 - 16, 1982.
The last paragraph of this review, which was published March 14, 1974, reads, "Since it first came out, I have thought Mel Brooks' The Producers was the most offensive movie I ever saw; I've now seen Mel Brooks' Blazing Saddles and I no longer think this."
Tuesday, July 2, 2019
Twenty six drawings are put in a box and forgotten, only to be found decades later.
What sounds like the beginning of a tale by Edward Gorey is actually the history of a collection of early works by the artist. In an added Goreyesque twist to the take, the art was found by a dealer who was pursuing works by another artist. To read the full article that appeared in the Lincoln Journal Star, go HERE.
Sunday, June 30, 2019
The Shrinking of Treehorn, the Edward Gorey illustrated 1971 book by Florence Parry Heide is under construction to appear as a feature length film by Imagine Entertainment. Director Ron Howard slated to take on the project. For more information go HERE.
Monday, June 17, 2019
For his TV Guide pieces, Edward Gorey let his playful sense of humor come to the forefront. Mr. Gorey was an avid television viewer who thoroughly enjoyed sitcoms and soap operas. For this piece, the entranced viewer has the wide eyed blank stare of a person who has spent many hours following too much trauma/drama on the television set. The speech bubble is a parody of dialog and the acting abilities of the soap's actors. The wording has been pasted onto the surface of the artwork, indicating that Mr. Gorey's changed the text after completing the artwork. It would be interesting to compare the original wording with the final text.