Thursday, December 3, 2015

The LeMarchand Legacy

Phillipe LeMarchand's greatest creation was his infamous puzzle box.  The intricate internal mechanisms required months of careful planning and design work before he could begin shaping the unusual materials used to create the device.   Pictured here is one of the folio pages used in that process.

In the upper left corner is the preliminary concept for the central clockwork mechanism that powered the box.  To the right is an alternate gearing mechanism bearing geometric engravings.  The design for the brasswork of the primary face is visible in the lower right hand corner.  Commentary and notes are interspersed with the schematic plans.

This is one of the LeMarchand folio pages I designed when I was really into the Hellraiser Mythos.  The paper is a bit wavy, so please forgive any distortions in the photos.  The print is roughly 11" by 17", on deckled 67 lb art paper.

I've been cleaning out my closets and this is one of the items I'm going to be throwing up on Ebay.  It's a pretty eclectic mix of stuff.  I'll post a link when they're actually listed.

1 comment:

CoastConFan said...

In a way Propnomicon’s illustrations of the interior of the box looks like a medieval astrolabe, but a much more complex one than the historical astrolabes. The Islamic ones have changeable components that, if you didn’t know better appears like props from a Hellraiser movie, they are so exotic. There are some nice reproductions of pocket astrolabes available on line, even (shudder) on eBay.

I wonder if LeMarchan’s lovely little box is, in a sense, a kind of astrolabe in that it makes apparent different dimensions rather than a position based on terrestrial-seen stars. For RPGs such as CoC, the extra fun comes in when you add an esoteric book to your Mythos astrolabe. Your players can locate and retrieve the component parts of the astrolabe and then find the pages that will explain the process. If used at the appropriate time and place (on Earth) it will direct your gaze (and mind) to a certain time and space where something wonderful will happen. Think about the movie The Ninth Gate (1999) if you need some cues.