Gothic effigy

A guide to dark visibilities

David Annwn Jones
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Gothic as a genre has become more amorphous and difficult to contain. This book brings together for the first time many of the multifarious visual motifs and media associated with Gothic together with areas that have never received serious study or mention in this regard before. It draws attention to an array of dark artefacts such as Goth and Gothic jewellery, dolls, posters and food, which, though part of popular mass marketing, have often been marginalised and largely omitted from the mainstream of Gothic Studies publishing. The book moves from the earliest Gothic architecture to décor and visual aspects of theatrical design, masquerade and dance. It focuses on paintings in two historical spans from Jan Van Eyck to Henry Fuseli and from Goya to H. R. Giger to consider Clovis Trouille's works influenced by horror films and Vincent Castiglia's paintings in blood. Gothic engravings, motifs of spectral portraits, posters and signs are covered. The book then uses early visual devices like Eidophusikon and the long-lived entertainment of peepshows to introduce a discussion of projection technologies like magic lanterns and, subsequently, film and TV. Gothic photography from Daguerreotypes onwards; and Gothic font, scripts and calligraphy are then discussed. Finally, the book presents a survey of the development of newer Gothic media, such as video gaming, virtual reality (VR) games and survival horror apps.

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‘With 60 luscious black and white illustrations, Gothic Effigy is a real feast for the eyes as well as a stimulating and encyclopaedic intervention in Gothic Studies. The book takes its readers on an ambitious journey through the various histories of Gothic visual media, most of which have only peripherally been the subject of academic attention. Bringing together traditional architecture, sculpture and painting with more modern artistic and ludic ephemera like jewellery, Halloween hayrides and graffiti, David Annwn Jones's new book proves to be original, erudite, approachable and necessary. Nothing short of an instant classic.'
Dr Xavier Aldana Reyes, Senior Lecturer in English Literature and Film at Manchester Metropolitan University

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