Out-of-This-World Inspiration: Books That Celebrate Classic Sci-Fi Cover Art

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Many artists and designers are also collectors, veritable curators of the very things that inspire them: old signs, posters, comic books, advertisements and book covers. Here are two books of retro-futurist sci-fi glory that demonstrate the art of collecting their inspiration in a book.

It Doesn’t Look Like this in Outer Space (So Sieht Es Aber im Weltraum Nicht Aus) by German author, artist and set designer Tommi Bremm, showcases the visionary work of German sci-fi cover artist Eyke Volkmer. Largely abstract and geometric, the covers have a kind of utopian cool about them. Bremm’s design for the book is minimal and clean, with an eye-catching typographical cover. Bremm also interviewed Volkmer about his singular style, providing incredible insight into both the artist and his work.


Misc. 42: Scifrançaise, by British designer Rian Hughes, brings together French science fiction book covers from his collection of novels from the ‘50s and ‘60s. Martians, death rays, flying saucers, giant brains—all the classic symbols of sci-fi are here. The books, from the personal collection of the author, are all original scans, showing shelf-wear that makes the retro-future pulp all the more palpable. Hughes has created over 40 books featuring his various collections, which include everything from rubdown letter sheets to pencil tops.


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