The Electric State
- Art & literary
Simon Stålenhag (b. 1984) is the internationally acclaimed author, concept designer and artist behind Tales from the Loop and Things from the Flood. His highly imaginative images and stories depicting illusive sci-fi phenomena in mundane, hyper-realistic Scandinavian and American landscapes have made Stålenhag one of the most sought-after visual storytellers in the world. Tales from the Loop was ranked one of the “10 Best Dystopias” by The Guardian, along with such works as Franz Kafka’s The Trial and Andrew Niccol’s Gattaca.
Each year, NPR - an American media organization serving as a national syndicator to a network of over 1,000 public radio stations in the U.S. - publishes The Book Concierge, an interactive, year-end reading guide. The books featured in the Concierge are chosen by NPR staff and literary critics, and are tagged with different categories such as The Dark Side (dystopias, true crime) and The States We’re In (the American experience, both true and fictional).
Simon Stålenhag’s international bestseller The Electric State can be found as a recommended read in six categories in the 2018 guide: Comics & Graphic Novels, Family Matters, For Art Lovers, Sci Fi, Fantasy & Speculative Fiction, The Dark Side, and The States We’re In. NPR adds the following review and motivation:
“Simon Stalenhag’s previous books – combinations of wild, gorgeous, photo-realistic alt-history art and tiny vignettes linked together into tight stories of people living in his imaginary pasts – have been focused on his native Sweden. But [The] Electric State is his first set in America, and it reads (and looks) like a nightmare travelogue of a young woman and her robot traveling across an American West ruined by war, populated by Lovecraftian machines and haunted by technological nightmares, in search of her missing brother. It is a sick and sweaty vision of an unlived era of American history, a post-human 1997 that never was, but almost could’ve been.”
Simon Stålenhag’s The Electric State has shot to No. 2 on Amazon China’s pre-order bestseller list. The Chinese edition will be available in stores on November 19th.
Just in time for Halloween, Skybound’s Gamma Ray reveals how to make a neurocaster from Simon Stålenhag’s The Electric State in a DIY video. Happy Halloween and happy crafting!
Simon Stålenhag’s Tales from the Loop and Things from the Flood will become a major TV series co-produced by Amazon Studios and Fox 21 Television Studios. Simon Stålenhag’s art blends elements of futuristic science fiction with images of rural life in Sweden and has reached a big fan-base worldwide.
“Simon Stålenhag’s paintings are renowned for their vision of a not-too-distant, futuristic landscape. We are looking forward to bringing that to life and sharing it with our Prime Video audience,” said Albert Cheng, co-head of television, Amazon Studios.
Writer Nathaniel Halpern (Legion) will serve as showrunner and executive producer for the series, and Mark Romanek (Never Let Me Go) will direct the pilot.
To read more about this project, click on “Read more”.
Russo Brothers Studio has acquired the film rights to Simon Stålenhag’s narrative art book The Electric State in a heated bidding war. Andy Muschietti (It) is negotiating to direct the film and will produce with Barbara Muschietti. RBS principals Joe and Anthony Russo will produce with them, and Simon Stålenhag and Julia Angelin will executive produce.
Writing The Electric State script will be Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely, the screenwriters of the last two Captain America films and the two sequels to The Avengers that the Russo Brothers are directing.
The Russo Brothers confirmed the deal to Deadline Hollywood, saying, “The opportunity to partner with inspirational talents like Simon, Andy, Chris and Steve is exactly the reason we started our company. We can’t wait to help this team create something special.”
To read more in Deadline Hollywood, click “Read more” below.
In late 1997, a runaway teenager and her yellow toy robot travel west through a strange USA, where the ruins of gigantic battle drones litter the countryside along with the discarded trash of a high tech consumerist society in decline. As their car nears the edge of the continent, the world outside the window seems to unravel at an ever faster pace, as if somewhere beyond the horizon, the hollow core of civilization has finally caved in.
Simon Stålenhag is the internationally lauded artist and author of Tales from the Loop and Things from the Flood, the narrative art books that stunned the world with a vision of an alternative 1980’s and 1990’s Scandinavia, where technology has invaded the tranquil landscapes to form an entirely new universe of the eerie and the nostalgic. Now, Stålenhag turns his unique vision to America in a new narrative art book: The Electric State.
Tales from the Loop is a heady journey through fantastical landscapes eerily similar to our own, where children explore and engage with abandoned robots, vehicles, machinery large and small, and dinosaurs and other creatures wander the roads and fields.
In Things from the Flood, Simon Stålenhag continues the stories of Tales from the Loop, memories of a Nordic childhood infused with strange machines and creatures from other dimensions. The focus has moved from the 80s to the 90s, a decade of great change when the outside world finally came to Scandinavia. These are tales of the trials of youth, of schoolyard hazings, of first kisses, of finding yourself - and robots.