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Different kinds of art cater to different tastes and preferences, often directed towards a specific type of culture or subculture that the audience belongs to. You’ll see it all the time. High society often leans towards the more classical works of art, while some of them opens their minds up to some contemporary ones as well. There are a few brooding souls that may look for morbidity in any piece they look at, while some light, playful one could look for a lot more color than they’re seeing at the moment.
As for science fiction and fantasy aficionados, they have actually formed different subcultures among them. Each subculture also look for more specific elements of art that they believe makes the pieces more appealing. One of these subcultures is what made steampunk art quite huge, changing the way you think about 19th century industrial steam engines.
What is Steampunk?
The entire steampunk culture has paved the way for a new line of literature, fashion, and most especially, art. Steampunk, as a whole, is actually a hybrid genre – aside from being part of science fiction, it also incorporates horror, fantasy, alternate history, and other similar lines into it.
Let’s start with steampunk literature. There are different settings used for it, some of which are alternative worlds, the American West, and post-apocalyptic worlds. Other popular settings also include fantasy and horror, as well as the Victorian era.
As for fashion, there are no clear guidelines, but you’ll see a huge contribution from the Victorian era. You have corsets, bustles, petticoats, and gowns – all with a modern twist to them. You’ll also see military-inspired clothing, suits with waistcoats, top hats, and the like. Accessorizing meant using parasols, timepieces, ray guns, and flying goggles. You also see a lot of post-apocalyptic elements like gas masks and ragged clothing.
Seeing how creative and unique the steampunk culture truly is, it is no wonder at all that the subculture’s preferred pieces of art are just as inspiring.
A Look at Inspiring Steampunk Art
Below are 40 examples of steampunk art that could turn you into huge fans of the art form yourself. They are mesmerizing, they are inspiring, and they could be a little dark sometimes. But no matter how violent or industrial you see these pieces to be, the ingenuity and creativity that lies behind them are just as inspiring as any other piece of art.