A Conversation Larger than the Universe
Readings in Science Fiction and the Fantastic, 1762-2017
Thursday, February 22, 7pm
"Even if you somehow miss the Grolier Club exhibition, you might still want to pick up Wessells's affection-packed monograph and, as they say on the radio, join the conversation - in this case, 'a conversation larger than the universe.' To infinity and beyond!"
-- Michael Dirda, The Washington Post
"Wessells is fascinated not only by books as objects, but by their contents as well: he's widely and deeply read in the field, and his 'conversations' with these books feel exactly like that."
-- Gary K. Wolfe, Locus
"erudite and altogether fascinating . . . In the year of Frankenstein's bicentennial, this is essential reading"
-- Publishers Weekly
A Conversation larger than the Universe is an exhibition that will be on view at The Grolier Club in New York City from 25 January 2018 through 10 March 2018. A Conversation larger than the Universe is a history of science fiction in seventy literary artefacts and a highly personal tour through the bookshelves of Henry Wessells. The books (many signed or inscribed by their authors), magazines, manuscripts, letters, and artwork date from the mid-eighteenth century to the present and will allow the viewer to explore the ideas and people that have defined the literatures of the fantastic, from Mary Shelley and H. G. Wells to Philip K. Dick, Joanna Russ, James Tiptree, Jr., and William Gibson, as well as works by W. H. Hudson, Richard Jefferies, and others not so widely known today.
Beginning with the origins of science fiction in the Gothic, this Conversation contemplates topics such as the End of the World (and After), Imaginary Voyages, Dystopia, Women Authors, Literary Innovation, Humor, the Sixties, Rock n Roll, Cyberpunk, Steampunk, and what's happening in science fiction and the fantastic right now. The exhibition adopts a broad description of Science Fiction encompassing Fantasy and Horror as well as bibliography and scholarship in the field. Foreword by John Crowley.
Henry Wessells is an antiquarian bookseller in New York City and author of Another green world (2003) and Extended Range (2015). A frequent contributor to The New York Review of Science Fiction, his work has appeared in Nature, Lady Churchills Rosebud Wristlet, Wormwood, Interzone, The Washington Post Book World, and other publications. He is also editor and bibliographer of American science fiction author Avram Davidson.
Henry Wessells, A Conversation Larger Than The Universe