Tuesday, August 15, 2006
Alex Ross' dark side
For approximately ten years, from the mid-forties to the mid-fifties, Alex Ross had a steady gig doing covers for Good Housekeeping magazine. That's an awful lot of cute kid paintings! One can imagine that an illustrator might become typecast by potential clients when one is so well known for doing such specific subject matter. but that didn't stop the good folks at Collier's from hiring Ross to illustrate their Nero Wolfe detective series.
And Ross did not disappoint: not only did he push the boundaries of his style by developing a more graphic, expressionistic approach, but he did not shy away from the kind of lurid, pulpy imagery that fans of the genre love. This facet of his work places Ross in my mind right up there with the always excellent James R. Bingham.