Adventures in Science Fiction Cover Art: Italian Tanith Lee Covers by Allison (aka Mariella Anderlini)

Allison’s cover for the 1978 Italian edition of Tanith Lee’s Volkhavaar (1977)

Mariella Anderlini (aka Allison) (d. 1992) was a behemoth of Italian SF art (note 1). Her covers graced entire years of science fiction editions for various Italian presses—for example, she illustrated the complete Slan. Il Meglio della Fantascienza series for Libra Editrice. Her work was ubiquitous and fantastic.

Over the years, loose cover art post sequences emerge from the back catalog of my site (both conscious and unconscious)–and one topic I return to regularly are SF covers by Italian women. Female Italian cover artists in the decades I am most interested in (50s-mid-80s), made up a far larger percentage of covers than in the US or the UK. The majority, including Luciana Tom Matalon and Fulvia Levi Bianchi (post forthcoming), were mainstream artists whose work was used occasionally used by SF presses.

Earlier posts in this sequence (includes two on Allison):

This post combines two of my favorite creators: Tanith Lee–Electric Forest (1979) and Don’t Bite the Sun (1976)–and Allison. While I’m not sure these are Allison’s best covers (see the two posts linked above), the combination weaves a compelling spell. Allison enjoys solitary figures arrayed against an evocative landscape. There’s a brittle isolation that permeates the layers. I am also fascinated by the popularity of Tanith Lee in Italy–most of her early novels were translated and released within a few years in the Italian market.

What are your favorite covers from the bunch?


Note 1: I do not know much about her biography — including her birthday and whether she is still alive. Let me know in the comments if you know more!

Allison’s cover for the 1981 Italian edition of Tanith Lee’s Day by Night (1980)

Allison’s cover for the 1977 Italian edition of Tanith Lee’s The Storm Lord (1976)

Allison’s cover for the 1978 edition of Tanith Lee’s The Birthgrave (1975)

Allison’s cover for the 1978 edition of Tanith Lee’s Don’t Bite the Sun (1976)

Allison’s cover for the 1978 Italian edition of Tanith Lee’s Vazkor, Son of Vazkor (1978) and Quest for the White Witch (1978)

Allison’s cover for the 1982 edition of Tanith Lee’s Electric Forest (1979)

Allison’s cover for the 1978 Italian edition of Tanith Lee’s Drinking Sapphire Wine (1977)


For cover art posts consult the INDEX

For book reviews consult the INDEX

For TV and film reviews consult the INDEX

12 thoughts on “Adventures in Science Fiction Cover Art: Italian Tanith Lee Covers by Allison (aka Mariella Anderlini)

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