A painting by artist Barclay Shaw that appeared on the cover of the 1986 book, ‘The Cunningham Equations.’
Born in Bronxville, New York in 1949, Barclay Shaw‘s career in art began rather modestly in the fields of sculpture and woodworking. In 1978 at the age of 29 and after spending time at the New England School of Art and Design, he branched out into painting obtaining work as a freelance artist. A year later his work was selected to appear on two covers of The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction. It wouldn’t be long before Shaw was busy painting covers for science fiction and fantasy books for authors such as Hugo Award-winning author Harlan Ellison (sixteen in all), Isaac Asimov, and Philip K. Dick.
It is somewhat mind-boggling how prolific Shaw has been over the last four decades—and the artist’s bibliography posted on the ISFDB (the Internet Speculative Fiction Database thank you very much) made me dizzy just trying to scroll through its list of entries. In 1995, Shaw finally got around to publishing a book containing his luminous artwork, Electric Dreams: The Art of Barclay Shaw which would win him a Hugo Award for Best Nonfiction Book in 1996. The introduction for Shaw’s first and only book was written by a man who gave him his big break, Harlan Ellison.
Images of Shaw’s remarkable work below—some is slightly NSFW.
Shaw’s artwork for the cover of Harlan Ellison’s 1975 book, ‘No Doors, No Windows.’
More after the jump…