Luigi Serafini Codex Seraphinianus
The Complete Luigi Serafini Codex Seraphinianus
The book is an encyclopedia in manuscript with copious hand-drawn, colored-pencil illustrations of bizarre and fantastical flora, fauna, anatomies, fashions, and foods. It has been compared to the still undeciphered Voynich manuscript, the story "Tlön, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius" by Jorge Luis Borges, and the artwork of M. C. Escher and Hieronymus Bosch.
The illustrations are often surreal parodies of things in the real world: bleeding fruit; a plant that grows into roughly the shape of a chair and is subsequently made into one; a copulating couple that metamorphoses into an alligator; etc. Others depict odd, apparently senseless machines, often with a delicate appearance, kept together by tiny filaments. There are also illustrations readily recognizable as maps or human faces. On the other hand, especially in the "physics" chapter, many images look almost completely abstract. Practically all figures are brightly coloured and rich in detail.