Tuesday, August 02, 2016

Lovecraftian Thing a Day No.215: Brian Ward Print - and the Tale of a Mysterious Disappearance.

Today's entry involves the true story of a (seemingly) mysterious disappearance relating to the print displayed above. Whilst living in  Leeds in the 1990s a friend of mine introduced me to Brian Ward, creator of the above piece. For those familiar with the early UK Chaos Magick scene, Ward was also the artist whose Lovecaftian art illustrated the cover and interiors of Peter J. Carroll's Liber Null & Psychonaut.

These illustrations can be viewed in their entirety within the following blog post -  I can confirm (from the all-too-brief discussions I had with Brian), that the Liber Null & Psychonaut images were partially inspired by Lovecraft's work; I can also confirm Carroll's assesment on said blog that Brian was, indeed, a 'strangely secretive character'. As the blgger notes, these illustrations were also used - without Brian's permission, it turns out (I was, in fact, the person who brought this to his attention) - as the basis of two scenes involving the Many-Angled Ones in Grant Morrison's Zenith comic-strip; unfortunately I can't find images of these online (and my Zenith hardcopies are in storage), but they can be viewed in issues 2 and 4 of Zenith Phase 1.

Regardless, I only met Brian on a couple of occasions at his flat in Leeds (so make no claim to knowing him well); however, the final time I saw him he gave me a signed copy of the above print (I have no idea why he decided to gift me with this), telling me that the entity depicted in the centre of the image had appeared to him in a dream, informing him that he would soon be taking a journey to France (possibly Rennes-le-Chateau?) where he would undertake an intiatory journey and lose an eye. Our mutual friend later informed me that Brian had, indeed, left Leeds (although apparently no one knew where to). My understanding is that neither Brian nor his art have since resurfaced - indeed, this may be the first time that a 'new' Brian Ward piece has been seen online.

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