In 1932, Bradbury was captivated by the performance of Mr. Electrico, a carnival magician. At the end of the act, Electrico reached out to the twelve-year-old Bradbury and commanded, “Live Forever!” Bradbury later said, ”I decided that was the greatest idea I had ever heard. I started writing every day. I never stopped.” Read below to see how Bradbury lives forever through the people he continues to inspire.
December's Featured Artist: Esteban Cánepa
December 3, 2020
Esteban Cánepa will always remember how his father lent him just the right stories from the never-ending bookshelves that filled their home in Argentina. The elder Cánepa handed down a love of literature to his son, but it was the son who introduced the father to a genre the boy had discovered on his own: science fiction. Estaban recommended The Martian Chronicles and his father loved it.
Today, Cánepa is a professional illustrator, storyboard and concept artist for advertising and cinema, and human rights activist. He has also taught Image & Sound Design at the University of Buenos Aires, his alma mater. The poetry and humanism of Ray Bradbury continues to fascinate and inspire him.
In a work of art based on The Martian Chronicles, “The Fog Horn,” Fahrenheit 451, and others, Cánepa celebrates the timeless appeal of Bradbury’s exploration of love, curiosity and the human desire to reveal the unknown. In evocative illustrations sometimes reminiscent of the work of Ray Bradbury’s friend and collaborator artist Harry Harryhausen, the Argentine artist renders Bradbury’s mythic words and worlds in pen and ink. Cánepa fittingly points to a quote from Fahrenheit 451 to explain Bradbuy’s continuing influence on him and others around the globe: “Grandfather’s been dead all these years, but if you lifted my skull, by God, in the convolutions of my brain you’d find the big ridges of his thumbprint.”
Cánepa, like Bradbury himself, is not content to share his own passions for science, fiction, and science fiction in one form for one audience. In addition to his illustrations for books and comics, he has directed and written award winning short films, worked on designs for educational toys, and contributed his talents to social justice campaigns. He recently illustrated a University of Buenos Aires Faculty Press science book for young readers, sharing his love of science and visual art with a new generation.