Friday, December 13, 2013

not the face!

I have a couple of footnotes to add to the Last And First Men book review; here's the first.

One of the cool things about my SF Masterworks edition (off the top of my head this is the third book in that series I've featured, The Sirens Of Titan and Roadside Picnic being the other two) is Les Edwards' arresting cover art. It seems inexplicably to have been given a weird dull grey-blue wash in the latest edition, but mine is the original multicoloured version.

The stump of some monument to man's ambition, resourcefulness and hubris that dominates the foreground of the image is a nice touch that evokes either Shelley's Ozymandias or the end of Planet Of The Apes (or possibly both), depending on your cultural preferences. Look a little closer at, it, though, and you'll see something else.

See it? Here, let me help you.

Whether this was deliberate on the artist's part or not I couldn't say. I'd be inclined to guess that it was, just because that bit resembling a nose seems a little too perfect to be a coincidence - it's even got nostrils! But, well, you never know - seeing things that aren't really there is pretty much the definition of pareidolia (or possibly apophenia) after all.

Seeing weird faces in random shit is always amusing, so once again I draw your attention to the splendid Flickr group entitled Hello Little Fella, and of course to the house, cats and many other things that look like Hitler.

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