Tentacular Spectacular: an exploration of deep-sea horrors and otherworldly fantasies

A collection of deep sea books from Rare Books
A collection of covers that features Lovecraftian horrors

Exploring the fascinating and entrapping journey of tentacles throughout art, culture and literature.

Inspired by Lovecraftian literature as well as visual art, film, cuisine and cephalopods, Rare Books presents Tentacular Spectacular, a dark journey into deep-sea horror, otherworldly fantasy and nightmares. Slimy, hideous, abject – tentacles are common in sci-fi depictions of alien or monstrous life forms. But sometimes, tentacles are strangely sexual and seductive.

Curator Dr Carolyn McKay, who has also curated the exhibition Lurid: Crime paperbacks and pulp fiction, has always been interested in the notion of tentacular horror in literature. As a criminologist, she is fascinated by how these otherworldly appendages have incited dread, the unknowable, the uncanny, and unthinkable violence and trauma.

WHEN: 14th February – 18 July 2022
WHERE: Fisher Library, Lv1 3 corridor & SciTech Library,
Exhibition Space

Design-a-Poster Competition

Your chance to WIN $300 voucher for arts supplies or books

Unleash the creatives! Help us promote the Library’s exhibition Tentacular Spectacular by designing a poster! We are looking for creativity and originality in incorporating tentacles and the words ‘Tentacular Spectacular’ in the design.

The winner of the competition will receive a voucher to the value of $300 for books or art supplies shop! We will announce the winner on both the Library and Sydney College of the Arts’ social media, along with the Library’s News site.

Competition Detail

Design Brief
The poster will be judged based on the creativity and originality in the incorporation of tentacles and the words ‘Tentacular Spectacular’ in the design or composition. Aesthetic quality, clear engagement with the ‘Tentacular Spectacular’ theme and professional presentation will also be taken into account.

The artwork must be scalable to print at sizes between and including A5 and A2. The poster must not use any copyrighted material, as it may be reproduced in hardcopy and digitally.

How to enter
1) Design a poster to promote the Library’s exhibition Tentacular Spectacular.
2) Register your entry details using the Enter & Submit Your Poster button below.

Prize(s) Voucher to the value of $300 for book or art supplies shop.

Submission Deadline: Competition entries close by 11pm 14 March 2022.

Eligibility Entries may only be submitted by persons who, during the Competition Period, are students currently enrolled in a degree program offered by the University.

Maximum number of Entries: One entry per student

Use this link to download the full competition entry details and terms and conditions.

If you have any questions about the competition, please contact Julie Price, Rare Books & Special Collections staff at julie.price@sydney.edu.au