Courtesy of Jonathan Marder
and Company Inc.
Michael Vollbracht and
Fashion Icon Iris Apfel
Nick Hunt of Patrick McMullan
is a fashion designer whose clients include Elizabeth
Taylor, First Lady Laura Bush, Cher, Cheryl Tiegs
and many more. Even Joan Crawford, Peter Allen,
Trisha Nixon, and Larry Hagman have worn his clothes.
His creations have been worn by Oprah, Angelina
Jolie, Julia Roberts, and Beyoncè on numerous
magazine covers including Vogue, Vanity Fair, Town
& Country, and O, the Oprah Magazine. He is
also a painter, illustrator, and author of distinction.
Until May of 2007,
Vollbracht was the Creative Director of Bill Blass,
LTD., a position he occupied for five years. In
1999, Blass had tapped Vollbracht to catalog his
work as a designer, which resulted in Bill Blass:
An American Designer. Vollbracht also worked
with Blass as designer of the retrospective exhibition
of Blass’ career, which opened at Blass’s
own Indiana University’s art museum in Bloomington,
Indiana, in October 2002.
was born in 1947 in Quincy, Illinois. He studied
for three years at Parsons School of Design in New
York City, where his drawings and sketches quickly
gained prominent attention. He was chosen to receive
the coveted Norman Norell award. Bill Blass who
became a mentor presented the award.
1n 1969, Geoffrey
Beene selected Vollbracht to become a member of
his design team, and he became an integral part
of the house. In 1970 Mr. Beene chose him to design
Beene Bazaar. In 1971, his talents were recognized
by Donald Brooks who hired him to work under his
label as the designer for the boutique Donald Brooks
for two years.
1n 1979, Vollbracht
launched the Michael Vollbracht Collection which
was known for its bold shapes and graphic prints
which sold at boutiques and major department stores
including Saks Fifth Avenue, Bergdorf Goodman, and
Neiman Marcus. In 1980, after just one year of business,
Vollbracht received the prestigious Coty American
Fashion Critics Award: Designer of the Year.
In 1985, Vollbracht wrote, illustrated, and published,
Nothing Sacred (now a collector’s
item and in its second printing) a visual diary
of his 25 years in New York City and the glamorous
personalities he interacted with from the worlds
of fashion, stage, and screen. In that same year,
he closed the doors of his business to concentrate
on his art. Vollbracht was selected in 1989 by The
New Yorker as one of its top illustrators, producing
collages and drawings for the magazine for over
half a decade. In Women’s Wear Daily’s
“Millennium Issue,” Vollbracht was called
one of the top illustrators in the last half-century.
work has been displayed in museums across the country,
including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and The
Smithsonian Institution. His illustrations are internationally
known and his artwork is included in many private
collections, among them former President Gerald
Ford, Diane von Furstenberg, Elizabeth Taylor, and