The Dark Horror Art – HP Lovecraft
Dark horror art in literature often refers to the amazingly creative approach some authors employ to present their material. While many different authors have employed such strategies through their publishing career, H.P. Lovecraft can be considered one of the legendary standouts in this dark horror realm. So unique and original was his material, the term “Lovecraftian art” has been frequently used to describe his style of writing. Even many decades after his passing, the work of H.P. Lovecraft still manages to frighten and inspire.
Lovecraft was born in 1890 in Rhode Island. He had a long fascination with writing fiction as a young man and would write a great deal of poetry while in his 20’s. In 1917, Lovecraft would turn his attention towards writing dark fiction publishing such legendary classics as The Tomb and Dagon. With these works he would establish his literary devices such as the Cthulu mythos and the Necromicon concepts. The former dealt with invisible beings that were the true gods of the earth and the latter dealt with a mysterious book of magic that could potentially control human destiny.
Such motifs and devices would be present through the bulk of Lovecraft’s work which was published in scores of pulp magazines at the time. A common misconception about Lovecraft is that he was a famous writer during his life. The reality of the matter is he wrote for a very small readership. However, the quality of his work kept interest in it alive long after his premature passing. As a result, many modern writers are highly inspired by the unique form of dark horror art that Lovecraftian art has become known for.
What makes the popularity of Lovecraftian art so strong is the fact it is rooted in a deep cynicism works of the fantastic generally avoided. Classic dark horror art writers generally wrote about weird things that are resolved by the heroes of the tale at the end. Such inspiring stories usually appealed to the male audiences that read the pulp magazines that featured Lovecraft’s material. However, the dark horror art of Lovecraft was far more downbeat and less positive. This allowed it to standout from the others and delivered a different intellectual and emotional reaction in the reader. Apparently, this approach worked since Lovecraftian art is still studied today while many of Lovecraft’s contemporaries have long since been forgotten.
What is it about cynicism mixed with horror that makes such writing appealing? There are a few factors that make this so. The enhanced realism of such an approach most definitely weighs into the mix. Not everyone is interested in an adventure like tale that ends perfectly. In fact, many will dismiss such tales as absurd and prefer a more darker edge to the mix. In this regard, Lovecraft assuredly delivers.
While the dark horror art of H.P. Lovecraft is not for everyone, it does have its fans. In fact, it has enough fans that the material is still read even many decades after its original publication. And it has certainly not lost any of its impact in the ensuing years.