A Good Time For Fashion Illustration?
Now on view at the Society of Illustrators, in association with the Leslie/Lohman Gay Arts Foundation, The Line of Fashion pays tribute to some of the most venerable names in illustration, including Antonio Lopez (more on him in our Jerry Hall piece), Kenneth Paul Block, and René Bouché. Spanning nearly a century of work, the group exhibition focuses primarily on the medium’s heyday—the fifties, sixties, and seventies—a fact not lost on participant Michael Vollbracht. “It’s still necessary to promote fashion illustration,” the ex-Bill Blass designer explained at Friday evening’s launch. “It is a dying art, I’m sorry to say.” While photography may have supplanted drawing in print adverts and fashion spreads, fiscally speaking at least, Vollbracht thinks it might be in a couple of his former employers’ best interests to revert back to the old model. “I’m very surprised that with the terrible downturn of the economy more stores like Bendel’s and Bloomingdale’s and Saks don’t use fashion illustrators,” he said. “If you have no money to pay that model and no money to pay Steven Meisel…”
The Line of Fashion, through May 2 at the Society of Illustrators, 128 E. 63rd St., NYC.