The history of Sci-Fi, in picture

Where does Sci-Fi originate from? This visual stunner of an infographic from New York-based artist Ward Shelley gives you a clue (or many clues, to be exact). Taking the form of a tentacled beast inspired by what Shelley says are Martians from H.G. Wells' War of the Worlds, the graphic offers a visual chronology of Sci-Fi that dates back thousands and thousands of years.

Science Fiction, says Shelley on his blog, is “the offspring of the collision of the Enlightenment (providing science) and Romanticism, which birthed gothic fiction, source of not only SciFi, but crime novels, horror, westerns, and fantasy”. 

Watch as the Age of Enlightenment intersects with science, which then bleeds into Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein which eventually creep’s its way to H.G Wells’ The Time Machine. And, sitting smack-bang between the 1930s to the 1950s, the period deemed to be the first golden period of Sci-Fi, is Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World. 

The further down the time-line you go, the busier the graph becomes and the more off-shoots you get, which include other genres like crime mystery and westerns.

If this graphic impresses you and you want more of the same, only different, Shelley's repertoire of infographics also features  Andy Warhol, Frank Zappa and media role models (for starters). Check them all out HERE.

Aside from his penchant for creating stunning pieces of graphic work, Shelley actually specialises in large projects that mix sculpture with performance. He’s won a bunch of awards and his work has featured in numerous solo and group exhibitions around the world, including the Museum of Modern Art and  the Brooklyn Art Museum. And just to add a little more variety to his bio, over his career Shelley has dabbled in advertising, construction, teaching, special events, theater, rock bands. Oh, and he’s also built a 37-foot sailing sloop.

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