The United States Postal Service has announced its latest batch of stamp art, including one honoring science fiction luminary Ursula K. Le Guin by artist Donato Giancola, which will be released later this year.
The stamp, the Postal Service says in its release, is the 33rd installment of its Literary Arts series, which has featured such authors as F. Scott Fitzgerald (1996), Mark Twain (2011), and Walt Whitman (2019). The stamp features a portrait of Le Guin taken from a 2006 photograph, as well as a scene from her famous novel The Left Hand of Darkness.
We are delighted to announce that the 33rd stamp in the US Postal Service Literary Arts series honors Ursula. Stamp release will be later this year, date TBD. From then on, all our letters will be three ounces! Thank you @USPS for this distinction. https://t.co/H0jw1KmhUb pic.twitter.com/NA8Yz7I7fl
— Ursula K. Le Guin (@ursulaleguin) January 15, 2021
Le Guin passed away in 2018 at the age of 88, leaving behind a rich legacy of written work that elevated the science fiction and fantasy genres in her lifetime. The Left Hand of Darkness is probably one of her best-known works, following a man named Genly Ai, as he travelled to the ice-covered world of Gethen. The novel featured an alien race that could change its sex, allowing Le Guin to explore sexuality and its role in culture long before many other genre authors tackled the subject.
The stamp is designated for three ounces, and the USPS says that it’ll hold its value forever, like a Forever Stamp. The agency hasn’t said when the stamp will be released, just sometime later this year.
This isn’t the first time that the USPS used science fiction for stamps: it released a sheet honoring Star Wars back in 2014, and another in 2016 honoring Star Trek‘s 50th anniversary There was also a planned 5-stamp series that would have honored science fiction authors back in 2013, but the agency later backtracked.