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Super science fiction 195902 n14


Super science fiction 195902 n14



Cover of Super-Science Fiction, February 1959

Ed Emshwiller was an American visual artist, filmmaker, and writer who was born on 16 February 1925 in Lansing, Michigan, and died on 27 July 1990 in Valencia, California. He is best known for his pioneering work in experimental film, video art and computer-generated art. Emshwiller studied at the University of Michigan before serving in the US Army during the Second World War. After the war, he attended the Art Students League of New York and began working as a freelance illustrator for science fiction magazines such as Galaxy and Astounding Science Fiction. He also created covers for books by authors such as Isaac Asimov and Ray Bradbury. In the 1960s, Emshwiller began to experiment with film and video, creating works that explored the boundaries between reality and illusion, and between the natural and the artificial. He was one of the first artists to use video technology to create abstract images and to manipulate images in real time. Emshwiller's films and videos have been shown at major museums and festivals around the world, including the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Whitney Museum of American Art and the Venice Biennale. He has also been a professor of film at the California Institute of the Arts. In addition to his work in film and video, Emshwiller was an accomplished writer, publishing several novels and short stories. He received a Guggenheim Fellowship in 1974 and a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts in 1981. Today, Emshwiller is recognised as a pioneer in the field of experimental film and video art, and his work continues to influence contemporary artists working in these media.

Super-Science Fiction, a short American digest of science fiction (1956-1959), played a notable role in the genre. Edited by W. W. Scott, it showcased emerging talents such as Robert Silverberg and Harlan Ellison. Silverberg and Ellison, already contributors to Scott's crime magazines, provided much of the content. Despite a promising start, challenges led to the magazine's demise. Feature Publications, known for its superhero titles, ventured into science fiction with Super-Science Fiction. Scott, with limited knowledge of the genre, paid competitive rates (two cents a word). The magazine initially thrived on independent distribution. However, Feature decided to shift its focus to monster stories, hoping to capitalise on the monster movie trend. The move, marked by a "Monster" banner, failed, and Super-Science Fiction folded in 1959 after four more issues devoted to monsters. Silverberg and Ellison, prolific contributors, played a major role. Despite its inconsistencies, the magazine has historical significance as a platform for their early careers. Although it did not achieve lasting success, Super-Science Fiction remains a fascinating relic of a transitional period in science fiction publishing. It reflects the evolving landscape of speculative fiction in the mid-20th century.





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