So what's an art lover to do?
Well, you could walk a few blocks to the Society of Illustrators to see another first rate collection of charcoal portraits. Over the 115 year history of the Society, each president has been drawn by a prominent illustrator of the day. These remarkable drawings now line the walls for any visitor to see. Here are some that particularly struck my fancy:
|Albert Sterner by William Oberhardt|
|Charlie Williams by James Montgomery Flagg|
|Charles Dana Gibson by William Oberhardt|
|Arthur Keller by George Brehm|
|Wallace Morgan by William Oberhardt|
|Howard Munce by Austin Briggs|
|Albert Beck Wenzell by Adolf Treidler|
|Barye Phillips by Paul Calle|
Many of these names went on to become legends in the field of illustration.
|A 1943 photo of past presidents along with the members who drew them. Note Martha Sawyers in the front row, the only woman in the room. No African American or Asians whatsoever.|
It's also interesting to note how the styles of the portraits changed over the years. The great illustrator William Oberhardt would recoil at the thought of using a photograph for reference, but it's clear from the hard edged illustration of Paul Calle that times changed.
I'll be showing more of these drawings in future posts.