BORN: 1956, Los Angeles
ETHOS: Maybe Tony Viramontes’s own beauty predisposed him to capturing that of others. What is certain is that this artist, with his confident and lightning-fast hand, had the ability to distill the essence of chic or reveal a person’s character with a minimum of lines. Yet his work was anything but minimal: Viramontes shared with Antonio Lopez a vibrant sense of spontaneity, and with Patrick Nagel an interest in the graphic New Wave look of the ’80s.
COPILOT: The in-demand Viramontes had a special relationship with Valentino, whose ads he illustrated.
BEAUTY IDEAL: Shrinking violets were not of interest to Viramontes, who preferred his women fierce (hence the album cover he designed for Janet Jackson’s Control), while his men were part pretty boy and part Tom of Finland.