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Toronto, Ontario, Canada
My passion is also my business, as I am with the Toronto based Hav-A-Kar Auto Group. I sell or lease any make of car, van or truck available in Canada. My interest in all things "car" has helped me with my many clients in Ontario over the past 20+ years. Please give me the opportunity to assist you.

Friday, November 27, 2015

Nov 27: Art Fitzpatrick - RIP

Art Fitzpatrick.Gone at 96, a long, productive and very interesting life comes to an end.

Growing up I didn't know who Art Fitzpatrick was, but I was surrounded by him and his partner's work Being a car guy from the very beginning (car enfant?), I loved cars and being from a "have not" city on the east coast, usually the only way I got to see the best cars were in their ads. Cars, like that perennial favorite of mine, the '69 Pontiac Grand Prix, pictured beside Art. Drawn as large as life, or in some cases, like this "68 model, larger than life........


Cars that, pushed out of the frame to emphasize how enormous they were. Those were the days or at least we thought they were. Art drew those beautiful cars in a way that made them seem to go on forever. Was there anyone who didn't envy the people in the ads and the life that they seemed to live?

His advertising work in the '50's started to be recognized and appreciated.........


.......like this 1958 Cadillac Fleetwood. This scene said it all without having to say a thing. Same thing can be said about this Buick Roadmaster ad.........


Going into the '60's, Art worked exclusively for the Pontiac Division of General Motors. At one time the Division Manager, John Delorean (the snowman?) decreed that all Pontiac's ads had to be drawn by Art Fitzpatrick. Now that is a very impressive endorsement.

The Pontiac ads featured Art's gorgeous artwork against some interesting or exotic background.........

 

Many of the Grand Prix ads featured European backdrops. Funny, when you consider that those narrow, twisty roads would hardly support a truck, let alone a big, wide American car. But the image was the thing. If we drove a GP, that could be us cruising those quaint towns and villages and maybe even Monte Carlo.

Fitzpatrick was very well respected (I guess that goes without saying). When the US Postal Service decided to do a series of milestone car stamps, who did they go to? Of course, Art Fitzpatrick. A couple of blogs ago, I showed the 1953 Studebaker stamp, which Art is holding in this pic.........


And here are the others.........
Yep, this guy was an icon. I have this Grand Prix ad framed and hanging in my office.............


I often think that, so many of the car ads today have lost some of their romance, or should I say, emotion. So many are sterile representations of all the techno features. Hey, I know that times change and probably for the better in most cases (some not), but those old ads were great.........

 

I seem to be fixated on the '60 Pontiac with this series of ads, but they are truly representative of Art's work. I mean, who wouldn't want the car shown in these beautiful renderings? Exaggerated features, like that front end or the length, but the added excitement of those pics must have played on buyers' minds and brought them into the showrooms.

A Pontiac fixture into the '70's.........

 

........Art was eventually replaced by photography. Better? That would be a personal opinion, but maybe more "truthful"? A few more ads for Opel and Art and his artwork were consigned to history.


But, what a great history and a great legacy. While this type of advertising was in its prime, Art Fitzpatrick couldn't be topped. Great ads and great memories. Thanks, Art, you were the best!

Until next time........



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