About the artist:
Dennis Simon received his BFA from the Maryland Institute, College of Art in 1969. He began his career as a fashion illustrator and three years later became an art director at a Baltimore advertising agency. In 1972, Simon decided to freelance full-time, concentrating on design and illustration for advertising and editorial subjects. Some of his early clients include the Smithsonian Institute, the National Geographic Society, Johns Hopkins University, and the U.S. Departments of Interior, State and Commerce. The majority of Simon's work in the 80’s was done for the National Park Service, designing exhibit systems for more than ten national parks and monuments and producing more than 200 historical paintings for these and other exhibits. In 1986 and 1987, Simon designed the exhibit system for the Collier Automotive Museum in Naples, Florida, providing an ideal opportunity for him to combine his skills in exhibit design with his longstanding interest in vintage automobiles. Simon’s interest in cars goes back almost as far as his interest in art. He remembers drawing girls for a short time before he began filling school notebooks with car sketches. His life as an automotive enthusiast has followed the usual route, starting with a ($250) MGA while in art school, and now, 50 or 60 cars later he enjoys his 1953 Morgan. “I was always careful to cultivate tastes I could afford content to consume vast amounts of automotive history and catching rides in the grander marquees.” By the 70’s, he had moved up market to early 50’s Jaguar XKs—overdoing it in fact, accumulating more classics than he needed—including a nice matched pair of spatted red XK-120 roadsters. Although there had always been a sprinkling of automotive assignments in those early freelance years, it was a casual spin in a fellow enthusiast's XKSS that helped him decide to concentrate wholly on automotive subjects. As well as being an avid car enthusiast, he has also had a lifelong interest in motorcycling. As a high school junior, his first “car” was a motorcycle. He has been riding ever since and has owned dozens of different bikes, both moderns and classics. In recent years he has spent a few weeks each summer riding in the European Alps. This interest in motorcycles has been reflected in his professional life with commissions from clients in the motorcycle industry. Simon’s automotive illustrations have been featured in Road & Track, Sports Car International, Automobile, Thoroughbred and Classic Cars, Classic and Sportscar, and Vintage Motorsport magazines. Favorite projects document automotive racing history, and he has designed over 60 original automotive racing posters for such clients as UNOCAL, Michelin, BF Goodrich, SVRA's Bahama Vintage Grand Prix, and a series of Monterey Auction posters. Simon designed and illustrated the cover of the Indianapolis 500 program and poster in 1998. He was commissioned by the US Postal Service to design the 1992 America’s Cup Sailboat Race stamp. Simon re-entered the world of fashion by designing a collection of silk neckties and scarves that feature his signature automotive painting style. He has produced custom-designed neckwear under his trademark label Century of Speed® for the Ferrari Club of America, Amici Amercani della Mille Miglia, Volvo North America, the Viper Division of Chrysler, Mazda, Speed Channel, and Lotus US. Simon’s recent works include a series of articles that he both wrote and illustrated for Christophorus, Porsche’s corporate magazine. His writing and illustrations were also featured in Auto Aficionado magazine. Simon has created poster editions for Porsche NA’s launches of their new Cayman and Cayenne, for their Rennsport Reunion vintage races, as well as a commemorative poster heralding the speed records set by their mid-engine Carrera GT. Commissions from Michelin NA include posters for Formula 1, the 24 Hours of Le Mans, the Tour de Corse Rally of Corsica, the Barber Pro Series, and the American Super Touring Series. He also publishes his Classic Victory series of posters under this trademark. New poster editions are always in the works. Privately commissioned paintings hang in both Europe and the U.S. and requests for posters and ties arrive from around the world. Simon’s designs have been praised in the automotive press as "Reminiscent of the great poster designs of the 20's and 30's" . . . "They present clean, powerful images that define the spirit of a ‘vintage’ event." In all his imagery and design, his goal has been to bring back the missing elements of style, romance and panache that so characterized an earlier part of this automotive age.
Dennis Simon received his BFA from the Maryland Institute, College of Art in 1969. He began his career as a fashion illustrator and three years later became an art director at a Baltimore advertising agency. In 1972, Simon decided to freelance