Wandrei, Howard [Elmer]


Wandrei, Howard [Elmer]
   (1909–1956)
   artist and late associate of HPL (1933–37). Howard, Donald Wandrei’s younger brother, had a turbulent youth, being arrested for burglary at the age of eighteen and spending three years in a reformatory. By this time, however, he had developed into a brilliant and distinctive pictorial artist, chiefly in pen-and-ink work. He illustrated Donald’s book of poetry, Dark Odyssey(1931), and then did some illustrations for the weird and science fiction pulps. He also took to writing, publishing numerous detective, horror, and science fiction tales in the pulp magazines. HPL met Wandrei for the first time in New York on December 27, 1933, and they corresponded sporadically thereafter. HPL had a high regard for Wandrei’s artwork (“he certainly has a vastly greater talent than anyone else in the gang. I was astonished at [the paintings’] sheer genius & maturity”: HPL to Annie E.P.Gamwell, [December 28, 1933; ms., JHL]); later, when he read some of Wandrei’s stories, he was also impressed (“I’m hang’d if I don’t think the kid is, all apart from his pictorial genius, getting to be a better writerthan big bwuvver!”: HPL to R.H.Barlow, April 20, 1935; ms., JHL). Wandrei’s weird tales have now been collected in Time Burial(Fedogan & Bremer, 1995); some of his detective tales are contained in The Last Pin(Fedogan & Bremer, 1996) and The Eerie Mr. Murphy(Fedogan & Bremer, 2001). Other volumes are forthcoming.

An H.P.Lovecraft encyclopedia. .

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