From the 1920’s through the ’40s, Rene Gruau, was the best style illustrator of his day. A continuation of Toulouse-Lautrec’s artistic lineage, Gruau shared his predecessor’s use of suggested lines and implied meaning rather than realism.
Gruau is most famous for his collaboration with the House of Dior and was even tapped by Fellini to make the poster for La Dolce Vita. Combine “Mad Men” masculinity with the flair of a Moulin Rouge poster and you’re in the vicinity of Gruau: Portraits of Men (Assouline). Today his work still holds the power possessed by all great advertising.