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Great Science-Fiction & Fantasy Works

  Science-fiction & fantasy literature: a critical list with discussions.

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You have apparently come to this page from a link on a search engine or another site. If this is your first visit here, I much recommend that you take a few minutes to look over the introductory material accessible via the red “Introductory” zone of the Site Menu available from the “hamburger” icon in the upper right of this (and every) page. An understanding of the purposes and principles of organization of this site will, I hope and believe, much augment your experience here, for this page and in general. You can simply click this link to get at the site front page, which, unsurprisingly, is the best place to start. Thank you for visiting.

SF&F Art: Some Resources

Quick page jumps:

“There are some pictures, which impress one, I know not how, with a conviction that they represent not the mere ideal shapes and combinations which have floated through the imagination of the artist, but scenes, faces, and situations which have actually existed.”

– Best Ghost Stories of J. S. Le Fanu, “Schalken the Painter”
J. S. Le Fanu

About This Page

Some great science-fiction and fantasy books have illustrations inseparably associated with them, as Tenniel’s for Lewis Carroll's “Alice” books. Some fantastic (or science-fictional) art is recognized as famous in its own right, as with Chesley Bonestell’s gorgeous planetscapes. But there is a lot more out there, with fresh work being continually created.

This page tries to give you a beginning insight into the wonderful illustrations of all sorts associated with science-fiction and fantasy works (or just on its own). It cannot be anything but just what I said: a beginning, because the subject is huge.

Award Winners

One way to find out who’s who in science-fiction and fantasy art is to see who has won which awards, and how often. There are several awards for such art work, and I here list what seem to be the major ones and their winners.

The Hugos

The “Hugo” award is presented by the World Science Fiction Society (WSFS); there is also information on the Hugo Awards site. Note that some of these awards are “Retro” Hugos, given decades after the fact (follow the link for details). The winners, in alphabetical order, are:

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The Chesleys

This award is named for science-fiction artist Chesley Bonestell, and is bestowed by the Association of Science Fiction & Fantasy Artists (ASFA). With this award, some care is needed, because Chesleys are given out in quite a number of categories; for simplicity, I have amalgmated all winners into one list, but these are not all awards for the same thing. More detailed lists are available, of winners both by year and by category and even of all nominees by name.

The winners (all categories), in alphabetical order, and showing both the total number of Chesleys nominated for and of Chesleys won, are:

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The Gaughans

This award is named for fantasy illustrator Jack Gaughan, and is bestowed by the New England Science Fiction Association (NESFA).

The winners, in alphabetical order, are:

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OnLine Galleries and Exhibitions

There are numerous sites on which some extraordinary examples of art and illustration focussed on science fiction and fantasy can be seen. I have found that such sites come and go with distressing frequency, so I have replaced my original list of sites with an appropriate Google search—just click the link.

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Science-Fiction and Fantasy Art Books

There are numerous published collections, but these are a few highlights. (The links are to purchase opportunities at AbeBooks.)

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This page was last modified on Sunday, 4 February 2024, at 5:32 pm Pacific Time.