Click to viewIn Polish artist Jacek Yerka’s surreal paintings, technology coexists with fantasy, buildings defy logic and gravity, and no boundaries exist between the biological and the mechanical. Although beautiful on their own, they suggest the settings for outlandish tales of foreign worlds, a quality that inspired science fiction writer Harlan Ellison to write an anthology of short fiction based on Yerka’s work.
In 1994, Ellison, inspired by Yerka’s work collaborated with the painter on Mind Fields. Yerka created 34 paintings for the book, and Ellison wrote a short piece of fiction for each painting, latching onto images or themes he saw in them. The piece above, entitled “Fever,” inspired a story which begins:
Icarus did not die in the fall. What his father, Daedalus, never saw was this: Icarus fell toward the Aegean Sea; fell through clouds; through billos and canopies and flotillas of clouds; and was lost to the sight of his father. The wings melted and fell away. They were carried on the stratospheric currents, miles away from the drop point at which Icarus had vanished through the cloud foam. When Daedalus banked and swooped and did his air-search, he found the pinions floating in the Sea. But he did not find his son, because Icarus had come down miles away.