Wednesday, October 18, 2017

The Silver Key

"An old servant forced the carven lid, shaking as he did so at the hideous faces leering from the blackened wood, and at some unplaced familiarity. Inside, wrapped in a discoloured parchment, was a huge key of tarnished silver covered with cryptical arabesques; but of any legible explanation there was none."
-H.P. Lovecraft, The Silver Key

The talented Gage Prentiss returns to our pages with this recreation of the titular Silver Key from Lovecraft's story.

 

2 comments:

bea said...

That is BEAUTIFUL.

Raven said...

Interesting. Wikipedia says the arabesque is a form of artistic decoration consisting of "surface decorations based on rhythmic linear patterns of scrolling and interlacing foliage, tendrils" or plain lines, often combined with other elements. (Merriam-Webster even says the style ...employs flower, foliage, or fruit and sometimes animal and figural outlines..., which at the end departs a bit from the strict anti-idolatry rule of the Islamic art tradition that inspired the word "arabesque"... Note also the dancers' use of the term....)

Gage Prentiss decorates this Silver Key with "arabesques" that are solidified pieces of Arabic script, the Word made Silver, as it were. How literary, and how fitting for a key into a writer's dreamworld.

I like his creatively ringing this change on the "arabesque" concept, very much.