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Guest Blogger Irwin Terry - Tells us about GOREYANA- A Blog Celebrating the Works of Edward Gorey


I was introduced to the works of Edward Gorey in 1979 during my first semester of art college and was instantly smitten. His drawings, wit, and macabre sense of humor resonated with me and I bought up every book currently in print. I expanded my searches to include out of print titles and eventually pieces of original artwork, which have become a primary focus of my collection. One thing led to another and now Edward Gorey and his images are inextricably woven into the fabric of my daily life.

In the pre-internet days of the 70’s, 80’s, and 90’s, book lists, catalogs and conversations with book dealers (and occasionally an elusive fellow collector) were the best way to expand one’s knowledge and collection. I made notes. I kept lists. I wrote down information that would help me remember the intricate and often baffling histories of Mr. Gorey’s works. In addition to collecting books and objects, I realized that I was also collecting stories.

Checklists began to appear in periodicals and Goreyography was published. I found that while lists helped with dates, publishing details and pricing, one of the things I was most interested in were the stories people told me about Edward Gorey and his works.

In 2008, at the urging of my partner who had begun an Oz collecting blog, I began to think about sharing my Edward Gorey collection and the stories I had been told in a blog forum. My goal was to present information and photos of the various pieces in my collection clearly and pass along my excitement for each particular item. It also afforded me the opportunity to encourage and entice others with an interest in Edward Gorey’s works into becoming serious collectors.

When composing blog entries, I purposely try and not tell the “plot” of any particular title so that someone who had not yet read a story will have the enjoyment of experiencing it for the first time. I also work to keep individual blog posts somewhat brief and will often break up a blog subject with a lot of information into two or more postings so as to not overwhelm a theme in a single post.

Collecting can be a solitary preoccupation, and one of my chief pleasures in creating and maintaining my Goreyana collecting blog is the comments and emails I have received from others interested in the works Edward Gorey. I am always thrilled when I get an email or comment from someone who has been able to find an answer to a nagging question by searching my blog. I feel that by passing on this information, I help encourage Gorey collecting the same way I have been encouraged over the years.

October 5, 2013 is the five year anniversary of my first blog posting. I look forward to the next 5 years of posting interesting facts and photos of the works of Edward Gorey.

Irwin Terry- GOREYANA

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Updates From Our Blog

In the Fall of 2019 the Edward Gorey Charitable Trust allowed the House to borrow several boxes of Gorey’s notebooks, journals, folders, and binders of material for use in this year’s exhibit. In pouring over the contents (a nice way to spend a winter) of what would become our 2020 exhibit He wrote it all down Zealously, it quickly became apparent that the List was a defining component. A curator’s lament: the amount of material was overwhelming—and the handwriting challenging—and so the final assembly, whittled down to fit in the House’s galleries, was selected for variety and some semblance of narrative flow.