The noir artist Coby Whitmore is a mainstay of American Illustration. Born in Dayton, Ohio in 1913, he spent the majority of his life and professional career in New York. He’s best known as a painter and magazine illustrator for such publications as Ladies Home Journal, Good Housekeeping, and Saturday Evening Post.
Although his work typically showcased the post-war, white, American family living a life of moderate luxury, a very strong noir theme seems to permeate his portfolio. Adultery, misogyny, and the seductive femme fatale all appear in his illustrations frequently. It seems that even if he wasn’t painting for the pulp rags of the day, as an artist he couldn’t escape the influence of the golden age of noir.
Some of his contemporaries and colleagues include: Norman Rockwell, Stevan Dohanos, and Albert Dorne, who were all fellow members of what became known as the Westport School of American illustration. Whitmore died in Hilton Head, South Carolina, in 1988 at age 75.
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