Foss’s evocative science fiction book covers pioneered a much-imitated style featuring vast, colourful spaceships, machines and cities, often marked with mysterious symbols. Human figures are usually absent. These images are suggestive of science fiction in general rather than depictions of specific scenes from books, and therefore can be—and have been—used interchangeably on book covers.

Books featuring Foss illustrations include the 1970’s British paperback covers for Isaac Asimov’s Foundation Trilogy, the Terran Trade Authority, several Edmund Cooper novels, and E. E. “Doc” Smith’s Lensman and Skylark series. Some of the art he did produce was specific to the stories and some examples of this are the covers he did for the Grafton publications of the Demon Princes novels by Jack Vance in the late 1980s, Star King, The Killing Machine, The Palace of Love, The Face and The Book of Dreams.

The impact that Foss’ unique and groundbreaking sci-fi art has had on modern culture is summed up with great feeling by Jodorowsky.

“Chris Foss knows that today’s technical reality is tomorrow’s falsehood. Chris also knows that today’s pure art is tomorrow’s reality. Man will conquer space mounted on Foss’ spaceships, never in NASA’s concentration camps of the spirit. “