Henry Darger: In the Realms of the Unreal is a generously illustrated book that represents the culmination of more than a decade of research into the enigmatic artist's life and work by world renowned outsider art expert John MacGregor.
Henry Darger was born in Chicago in 1892. Shortly before his death in 1973, his landlord, Chicago artist Nathan Lerner, made a startling discovery in his tenants room: the history of another world in fifteen volumes, In the Realms of the Unreal,145 type-written pages, possibly the longest work of fiction ever written. In startlingly vivid detail, Dargers Realms recounted the role of seven sisters, known as the Vivian Girls, in a violent conflict over child enslavement on an unnamed planet. Amidst the refuse, Lerner also found three huge bound volumes of brightly colored illustrations for the work, many painted on both sides and some over twelve feet in length. In the decades since his death, Dargers alternate universe has attracted the intense interest of collectors, critics, and scholars around the world. His illustrations and writings have been the subject of major museum exhibitions in Europe and North America.