First published in 1965, Frank Herbert's Dune was an evocative, far-future cocktail of ecology, politics, technology and religion that is still influencing artists in all media today. Spawning 17 sequels and prequels and selling more than 12 million copies worldwide, the Hugo and Nebula award-winning Dune was voted the top science fiction novel of all time by Wired magazine in 2012.
To celebrate the 50th anniversary of the seminal work's publishing, The Folio Society has released a premium new edition of Dune with a collection of stunning painted artworks by Sam Weber. This impressive 576-page volume contains 11 full-color illustrations as well as black-and-white spot sketches and is housed in a high-quality metallic slipcase designed with an abstract pattern of the sands of Arrakis.
In an interview with Tor.com, Weber elaborated on his artistic process when tackling the monumental anniversary project:
Getting asked to illustrate Dune was something I’d dreamed about for a long time. With that said, it was honestly a pretty intimidating prospect, especially at the outset. It’s been envisioned so well in the past, and has occupied such a prominent place in my psyche, I think once the initial thrill passed I became really nervous about doing the project justice. At some point I just had to reconcile within myself that I’d be bringing my own take to the text and that an artist’s shortcomings are a part of what makes one’s work interesting and unique.
Most of the work I make these days is stand-alone imagery—book covers and things like that. Creating images that function well on the inside of a book, as opposed to those that wrap around the outside, was a real challenge. Figuring out how to challenge myself while at the same time taking advantage of what I’m good at was difficult. In the end, I think I’m most proud of the pictures that allowed me to try something new.
Sift through Weber's amazing illustrations in our gallery below and tell us if this definitive $125 Dune edition belongs on your bookshelf.