Admit it, “Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark” was one of your favorite childhood books.
Alvin Schwartz’ Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark scared the bejeezus out of me when I was little, and I loved every bit of it. The terrifying trilogy came out between 1981 and 1991, and soon became so popular that parents tried to have it banned time and time again. It wasn’t just the short stories or the fact that the books were aimed at children. The amazing and deeply disturbing illustrations from Stephen Gammell are what kept us all reading.
And now someone has had the great idea of putting those illustrations into an art exhibit.
Gammell’s illustrations inspired innumerable artists, and those artists wanted to express their gratitude by displaying their own modern interpretations of his work in the popular children’s series. The art exhibit opened on March 10, 2017 at the Brick at Blue Star Arts Complex in San Antonio, Texas. If you were unable to attend, do not worry. The exhibit plans on giving updates of the work on their Instagram account. Check out some of the work below:
The terrifying tales live on…
It is nice to see so many talented artists inspired by such a dividing work. Being afraid of something borne of imagination is something every child confronts while growing up. Having a book to go to that intends on scaring you gives those natural fears a tangible place to reside. I understand parents’ aversion to the series, but I prefer to see the series as important.
Its popularity is no accident.
Being a kid is difficult, and books can be a great source of comfort. Having a book that said, bluntly and honestly, there are a lot of scary things out there you haven’t even thought of, was a strange source of comfort for me when I was growing up. I read the Scary Stories books over and over until the fear went away.
Then that fear turned into respect.
And that is exactly what these artists are expressing with this exhibit.
I wish I could see it in person. It looks amazing.
To remind you of how wonderful the stories were, the complete audiobook series is available on YouTube. Here is the first book, with illustrations: