This week 1980s fashion illustrations by Tony Viramontes will once again be in the public eye with the launch of an online sale of his original drawings on 1stdibs.com and the simultaneous release of the monograph, Tony Viramontes, The Bad, The Beautiful and the Damned by Dean Rhys Morgan. The 1stdibs sale goes live tomorrow (Wednesday, 4th September 2013). The book will be published by Laurence King Publishing and will be available to buy in the UK from the 7th October 2013.
Tony Viramontes’ dreamy and theatrical fashion illustrations of iconic couture by Valentino, Chanel, Jean Paul Gaultier (who wrote the forward to the book), Claude Montana and Dior were the definition of the 1980s high fashion ideal. A Parson’s graduate, Viramontes got his start at the New York Times in 1979. He soon moved to Paris where he established himself as the illustrator of choice for all the big names of the day. By the time he died of AIDS at the age of 31 in 1988, he had also immortalized a host of New Wave darlings including Duran Duran, Paloma Picasso, Tina Chow, Janet Jackson, Naomi Campbell, and Janice Dickenson to name a few.
The exclusive 1stdibs sale will feature 25 of these original fashion illustrations and portraits of his contemporaries and lovers, as well as a dozen moment-capturing Polaroids. Many of these drawings are featured in Rhys Morgan’s book. The drawings all come from the Viramontes family who live in L.A. and kept them for decades in a storage locker.
Think I’ll take the black and white Dior, it’s very Cruella De Ville! What about you?