In the years prior to World War II, the fashion publication, Vogue, was tantamount to a bi-monthly epiphany, thanks to a group of brilliant graphic artists producing covers, sometimes in tune with the season, and sometimes just flat-out out of this world.
Great pochoir artists from the stream of Gazette du Bon Ton—figures like Georges Lepape, Pierre Mourgue and Eduardo Benito—began to strut their stuff from the mid-1920’s onward (when Gazette folded), endowing Vogue with dazzling Art Deco energies.
A bit later on, Carl Erickson (known to the public as Eric) began providing chic, but more relaxed than strict-deco. designs. It is his genius for blitheness that we feature in today’s blog—showing, therefore, only his works.
His work strikes me as particularly intriguing, inasmuch as its touch presages the modernist lightness of touch of post- World War II graphics. Eric seems to have seen fit to concentrate upon those attitudes and auras bespeaking a reservoir of calm to deploy amidst an increasingly stressful world.
The iconic cover, from November 15, 1939, suffused with being on the verge of that War, indicates how the private serenity he could navigate to such thrilling ends could readily open itself to dark and deadly abysses.
As a coda, we offer here an inspired set-up of fashion graphics by our intern of a year ago, Shannon Uhera. Her catalyzing the paper works so well in getting to that light spirit Eric was fascinated by.