Bernie Fuchs, Illustrator, Dead at 76


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A sad loss. Fuchs was one of the defining voices in mid-20th century illustration, synthesizing abstraction, realism and commercialism in a manner uniquely suited to the character of American life. Obituary at The Washington Post, and see some examples of his work in this Flickr set.

Update: As is to be expected, Steve Heller offers the definitive obituary in The New York Times.

  1. I studied at the Illustrator’s Workshop in Tarrytown, NY at Marymont College in the summer of 1977. Bernie, and five of his contemporaries [Cober, Heindel, Peak, Otnes, and English] led a group of fellow illustrator wanna-bees for an entire month under the direction of Mike Smollin. Bernie was a terrific guy and a great talent. His style is often [badly] duplicated even today.

  2. Mr Fuchs’ beautiful mastery of line and color inspired me as a kid to pursue a career in the graphic arts. It seemed every magazine I picked up back in those days had at least one illustration in it that he had done. In the pre-Google era back then, I would conscientiously seek out any and all magazines I could find at news stands, dentist offices and libraries that contained a Fuchs illustration, and sometimes, I would tear ads out to study and admire his work.

  3. I am so saddened at learning of the death of
    Bernie Fuchs. I am chocked! Still so young at 76!
    I’m myself approaching 70 and it is scary.
    I remember being introduced to his work for the
    first time, going through the pages of “Sports
    Illustrated” in the early sixties, at the start
    of my own career and saying to myself–this is
    the kind of work I want to be doing!! And from
    that day-on, I followed his career closely with
    admiration and I admit, a bit of envy.
    His talent has influenced many illustrators
    including myself. Bernie will be remembered has
    a major superstar of this period. I am grateful
    for his contribution to the profession and I
    shall miss him.

    A. Moreau

  4. It was sad to hear of the passing of Bernie Fuchs. He was such an inspiration – similar to the likes of Milton Glaser, Paul Rand, Kenneth Paul Block and Bob Peak. These artists were the inspiration that led me to attending art school in Seattle and later my advertising career in NY.

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