Saturday, March 25, 2006

THE DOYLE DIARY

Another choice find at Steve's Bigfoot Books was The Doyle Diary, a fascimile reproduction of the 1889 diary/sketchbook of Charles Altamont Doyle, father of Sherlock Holmes creator Arthur Conan Doyle. Doyle was a Victorian English eccentric, institutionalized as insane, who transformed his garden prison (the Sunnyside asylum) into a sometimes macabre, often beautiful imaginary world.

(click on images for more detail)



His watercolors are filled with a visionary strangeness, like a less violent, more artful Henry Darger. Some have even compared him to William Blake in his hermetic mythology, which often depicts huge, threatening birds in surrealist juxtaposition with chaste looking women.



And some of them are just plain weird...



Squirrel Nursing the Lost Babe