Everything You can Imagine is Real

“Everything you can imagine is real” was said by Picasso and I believe this is true. Sight is one of our strongest interactions with the world. It opens the door to discovery. In Science Fiction and Fantasy the artist first envisions a world and brings it to life for the rest of us to see.

Fred Gambino’s illustration Valentine’s Robot was drawn for the anthology Asimov’s Valentines. The illustration shows a robot with a rose and smoking gun. The paint on the robot is smeared and dirty. It has obviously been put to work. Yet in one hand it holds a fragile rose (compared to it!) perfectly in bloom.

Science Fiction and Fantasy art starts with the artists own sense of wonder and brings it alive for everyone to see. Valentine’s Robot was created at the result of a challenge to create a Science Fiction artwork with a Valentine’s tie. The artist knows their world and what is happening in it. Sometimes the only words the observer has is the title, if that, and once the painting is complete the viewer joins in.

When I view this I wonder what it is that created this situation. What is driving the robot and the world that it would exist in? Does the robot know what it is holding? Art can inspire those who see it and create a world, while perhaps not identical as the illustrator’s, just as real. Artists are creators.

Henri Matisse said “Creativity takes courage.” We couldn’t agree more. We want to encourage and applaud the great dreamers among us. This marks the first year we offer the Aether Illustration Contest. Show us your worlds for a chance to be included in Sibyl’s Scriptorium.