Thursday, January 31, 2008

elephant house

I was at a friend's house recently, perusing her bookshelves, and noticed a book about Edward Gorey's home in Massachusetts ~ Elephant House. I loved, loved it. Not only are the photographs wonderful (taken by Kevin McDermott shortly after Gorey's death), but the book is an insight into the inner workings of this clever and brilliant illustrator. The house is chock full of the most amazing collections of things. Here's a little excerpt:

"Edward loved to "arrange" things. He liked to bestow relationships on a group of objects, raising juxtaposition to a new level of insight and eccentricity. From the moment you entered his property you might find yourself standing "in" one of his arrangements. A "family" of miscellaneous flatirons marched around the corner of the house. A bird's nest rested on the treadle of an antique sewing machine. Rocks of various sizes and shapes could resemble frogs if viewed at a certain angle, or for a brief time of the day with the appropriate light and shadow... Birds had built a nest over the light at the front porch door. Edward would never think of removing the nest; he simply did not use that door. The nest remained for the last years of Edward's life. Mysteriously, it fell to the ground soon after his death."


Mo'a said...

I adore Edward Gorey's art...the opening to Mystery on PBS has amused me for years.
Thank you for the info...I will order the book...I did not know that his house is open to the public. I have a friend that lives on the Cape and she would love to go there also...I feel an visit to the Cape coming on :)

Janet said...

I don't think you will be disappointed. My copy just arrived this week. And, oh, to go to the house!