Tuesday, April 19, 2011

The Art of The Hobbit

So, here's a welcome announcement: Wayne & Christina, authors of J. R. R. TOLKIEN: ARTIST & ILLUSTRATOR [1996], will be doing a book devoted entirely to JRRT's illustrations for THE HOBBIT -- more than a hundred of them, all told. I learned about this via the MythSoc list*, but for the full announcement see Wayne & Christina's website:


No release date yet, but it'll be part of the Big Event that will be the seventy-fifth anniversary of THE HOBBIT's first publication next year, which shd segue smoothly into promotion for the upcoming HOBBIT movie(s), the first of which has just started filming and is due out at the end of next year.

In any case, given how good ARTIST & ILLUSTRATOR is, this shd be something anyone w. any interest in Tolkien's work at all shd be on the lookout for.



aranel said...

That's excellent news. I am a big fan of their work on Tolkien - will look forward to this.

grodog said...


Do you have any details about the art presented in the new book will compare to Pictures vs. Artist & Illustrator?

I enjoy Tolkien's artwork nearly as much as his writing, which is one of the reasons I love Pictures so much---the oversized, high-quality reproductions on excellent paper!


John D. Rateliff said...

Hi Aranel:
Yes, I'm v. much looking forward to it too. They'll do a good job, and it'll be nice to see all the material collected into one place.

Hi Allan:
I don't have any specific information, but clearly they'll reproduce all the HOBBIT art from ARTIST & ILLUSTRATOR, supplemented by pieces appearing in MR.BAGGINS/RETURN TO BAG-END, Christopher Tolkien's 1987 Foreword, various exhibition catalogues, and some unpublished pieces. Most of these shd be items in a sequence, such as the various 'The Hill: Hobbiton' drawings from Chapter I, or the sequence of Lonely Mountain drawings from Chapter XII.
It also depends on whether you include calligraphy and cartography: there are more partial maps and more copies of Thorin's Letter, for example.
It'll also be nice to see pieces appear in color -- like, for example, the pleasant sketch of Gandalf approaching Bilbo's doorstep that appears on the top of Plate III in my book.
All in all, this book shd clearly be marked down as a Good Thing.