German painter and graphic designer Johann Peter Reuter (1949-) created fourteen credited covers for German SF presses between 1977-1984. I have identified a potential fifteenth cover included below–the 1977 edition of Isaac Asimov’s Second Foundation (1953)–that I believe fits his style and date range. From the information gleaned from his homepage, Reuter’s SF output occurred in the first few years as a freelance artist after studying art in Dortmund. He started as a figurative painter before evolving to non-figurative forms (brief artist blurb).
If you’re interested in his non-SF art, check out his fascinating series of paintings from 2004 on the visualization of the mass.
While figurative, his science fiction covers peer into surreal interior spaces and landscapes. A bleakness pervades. Haunting forms emerge from the landscape or contort across the plains. Books, scattered leaves, and shrouds formed as if occupied by shriveled human shapes litter foregrounds…
While lacking the searing might of Wojtek Siudmak’s countless surrealist covers for 70s and 80s French SF paperbacks and magazines, it’s hard not to be pulled into the surreal worldscapes of Reuter’s visions.
I’m partial to Retuer’s cover for the 1977 German edition of Isaac Asimov’s Second Foundation (1953)–if it is his work. Of the firmly credited covers, the 1981 edition of Philip José Farmer’s The Magic Labyrinth (1980) and To Your Scattered Bodies Go (1971) are my personal favorites.
What are your favorites?
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