Fortune cover illustration by Peter Helck, September 1930, 2008.6.1

The Fortune Collection

From 1930 to 1950, Fortune Magazine was an expensive high quality publication with illustrated covers by well known American artists, such as Robert Gwathmey and Peter Helck. In order to obtain fine illustration images, the magazine editors requested that artists submit illustrations of their own desire and design. The cover illustration intentionally did not represent the Fortune’s feature story of the month. These early covers are serigraph prints on heavy paper. The high quality resulted in a magazine that sold for ten times what other magazines cost at the time. This cover art collection chronicles a great variety of agrarian imagery showing the prevalence of rural subject matter in the national cultural prior to the industrial revolution.