The Artwork of John Alvin

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"Creating the promise of a great experience" was how John Alvin described his role as artist and one of the preeminent designers and illustrators in the history of cinema art. He was a humble wonderful man with an immense talent who left this world too soon, but the world of movie lovers and savvy art aficionados are the better for his body of work.

We have made great advances in the acceptance and appreciation of film art, both production and interpretive, in the fine art world. That has a been due in part to the fans of John's work voicing their unshakable belief in the art form, and the artists who have been influenced by him going confidently forward, playing with and expanding on their own aesthetic with a more solid base of collectors--who came to appreciate film art through John's art, as well as the work of Bob Peak, Robert McGinnis, Richard Amsel, Saul Bass, Drew Strezan, and other influential artists in the cinema art genre.

Sadly, the illustrative movie poster is largely a thing of the past. That makes the art of John Alvin and other movie campaign artists all the more important as a way to look back at what made us want to go see (and hope to love) the classic and contemporary movies we have as our shared cultural experience.

John Alvin worked on over 260 movie campaigns, and has over 140 finished posters to his credit. That is more than certainly anyone in recent history, and possibly the most ever, but that's hard to quantify…What we do know is he is part of the reason we love and remember the movies we have seen--

Disney created a name for what John did. It's called "Alvin-izing". Alvinizing is what was needed to be done to images being used in campaigns to give it emotional weight, or make you get emotionally attached in an instant. It's why he got hired so many times by Disney. They felt only John could "Alvin-ize" a campaign, and they wanted his touch.

Having known and loved John as a close friend, we miss his presence in the world. He would have loved seeing film art start being more accessible, appreciated and understood by art and film lovers. He would have loved seeing more of his images being created as limited editions, as Acme, Starwars.com, Collectors Editions, and ArtInsights have done. We are so committed to raising the awareness of film art in general and John's art in particular--to having it be accepted in art collections not just because the collector loves the movie, but because the art speaks for itself. We think John's art does that.

This site was created by us--Michael Barry and Leslie Combemale of ArtInsights Gallery, as a fan site while John was still with us, to show at least a portion of his body of work. It became a wonderful place for fans and friends to come after his unexpected loss in February of 2008. Now that we at ArtInsights are the sole representative of his estate for his family, it is evolving as we can develop it, showing the new limited editions and art being released, and supplying links to our gallery for the ever shrinking collection of original art available for purchase. Since we just redesigned and created our own gallery site, we are adding the originals available there, and adding them to this site when we can.

If you have any stories of meeting John, buying his art "way back when", or questions about film art in general, contact us--hopefully we can put some of them on this site. If you want to see some interviews we did with John, go to this page or our gallery site.

And. Thanks for your interest in John Alvin's art. He was not a man who made loud noises about his talents, which is partially why He would often joke when someone complimented him or told him he was a genius, "You are clearly someone of great taste and class." and now that's what we say of you, his fans.

Leslie Combemale ArtInsights Animation and Film Art Gallery/johnalvinart.com

Welcome to www.johnalvinart.com, a site dedicated to the art of cinema artist John Alvin. I am Leslie Combemale, and i'm a partner in ArtInsights Animation and Fine Art Gallery in Reston, Virginia. We first started carrying John's work about 3 1/2 years ago, when we saw it and couldn't resist. We also saw the future (no, it's not plastics) and we believed it was in the art of the cinema. Not just movie posters, which have been collected for many years, but the original art used to make the film and art by these exceptional artists. We believe John is at the top of this art form.

I also have to say: if for you collecting and fandom is contingent on the subject of adulation being a stand up guy, a mensch, a dude of superior fabulosity, you need look no further than John Alvin. He's a total sweetheart. (We only support artists in our gallery who ooze kindness and integrity. Seriously)

This is a brand new site we brought together in time for the Star Wars Celebration in LA, for which John created the official poster (which you can see to the left). There will be more to the site in the coming months, including forums, notes from John, coverage from his special events, and more accurate information overall. This is meant to be a place for fans of John Alvin to find information and learn about him and his art. As the site grows we hope to create a community of his fans... So... be gentle with me, and if you see something you fall in love with, (as we did with John, and his wife Andrea the first day we met) please let us at ArtInsights know and we will find out if the image you want is still available or if not we will try to get you something similar.

Lastly, just a reminder right here on the front page that John will be at ArtInsights for a one man show of new and original art on the weekend of October 6th. Make plans now to come!


Leslie
artnsights@aol.com
ArtInsights, May 20th, 2007
All images copyright their respective studios
Portions © Disney Studios 2007 © Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. 2007 © Universal Studios 2007 © Amblin Entertainment 2007 © New Line Cinema 2007 © Twentieth Century Fox 2007 © Lucasfilm, Ltd. 2007 © John Alvin. All rights reserved
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