I woke up yesterday morning to the news that Ernst Fuchs had passed away. Fuchs’ influence on fantastic art is incalculable and mirrored in the works of innumerable artists. Like Salvador Dali, Zdzislaw Beksinski, and Hans Rudolph Giger, Fuchs’ work became a touchstone for visionary and fantastic artists everywhere, a gateway into a realm of artistic exploration, technique and production that seemed otherworldly.
In the early 1990’s I came across this book. Remember that this was before the internet, when discovery tools were more limited. Opening the cover was a revelation. As they say, mind blown. Fuchs seemed to have astonishing skill and vision across every medium. His imagination was rich and unlike anything I’d seen before. And he knew Dali. Unlike Gustav Klimpt, Egon Shiele and Oskar Kokoschka, other favorites, he was still alive and working. Although I never had the good fortune to meet him, just knowing that he was out there making art was inspiring. With the internet came easy access to many of Fuchs’ incredible images, but I will never forget that first encounter in the stacks of the University of Western Ontario.