The celebrated Italian artist explores Corcoran’s markets in a new series of drawings that capture the moment with wit, optimism, and street smarts.
For a company famed for its left-brain business smarts, Corcoran has an awfully colorful right brain. Visual artists have always been part of the Corcoran character, and over the years, the company has dreamed up indelible brand campaigns featuring the work of some renowned creators, including artist Kari Modén and photographer Annie Leibovitz. And this year, acclaimed illustrator Simone Massoni joins the conversation.
The impish 42-year-old, who draws raves for his relentlessly clever contributions to Vanity Fair, GQ, The New Yorker, and others, started interpreting the Corcoran personality in a series of smart spot illustrations back in 2018. When the company inaugurated its franchise business last year, Massoni was right there, creating fresh illustrations for each new affiliate. And like the magazine and advertising work that has earned him accolades, Massoni’s Corcoran drawings capture the moment with wry wit, optimism, and cheeky street smarts.
“Simone’s work shares the spirit of Corcoran in so many ways. It’s colorful, playful, but sharp,” says Christina Chuo, Corcoran’s Senior Creative Director. “His style complements our brand perfectly.”
Massoni first came to New York as an aspiring musician but quickly discovered his true gift. He lives in Italy most of the year, but his illustration work brings him to New York for months at a time, and he savors those stints as a seasoned local. His illustrations are active and iconic, at once reverential and impudent — stylized images of familiar buildings and still lifes of Barney’s bags and bagels with lox and the famous Anthora paper coffee cup. There are knowing nods to New York life, too, love letters to New Yorkers—a camera-toting King Kong tourist putting a ladder to the Empire State Building, for instance, or a harried urbanite hailing a cab à la the Statue of Liberty.
“You can see the city in these drawings by seeing the little details of my comings and goings,” says Massoni. “I saw it. It’s a compliment to me if you say you can see the city through my drawings. New York is my city.”