Saturday, September 10, 2011

The World Trade Center in Pre-9/11 New Yorker Covers

The World Trade Center opened in 1973 in lower Manhattan.  The twin towers were briefly the world's tallest buildings until the completion of the Sears Tower in Chicago, now the Willis Tower.  They were massive structures boldly dominating the New York City skyline and, love them or hate them, they just couldn't be ignored.  

R. O. Blechman's 1974 New Yorker cover put the World Trade Center front and center and paid homage to the City's Dutch origins by depicting fanciful windmills on the buildings. Arthur Getz's 1982 cover gives the best sense of the towers's scale against the lower Manhattan skyline. In most of the New Yorker's cover art that appeared prior to 9/11, though, the World Trade Center was not the sole focus, but rather was the most outsized of the many notable landmarks of which the City boasted.

Robert Weber, December 3, 1973

R. O. Blechman, April 29, 1974

Eugène Mihaesco, December 27, 1976

Paul Degen, May 8, 1978

Eugène Mihaesco, May 14, 1979

Charles Addams, May 5, 1980

Arthur Getz, July 19, 1982

Bob Knox, May 2, 1988

Robert Mankoff, August 22, 1988

John O'Brien, April 9, 1990

Bob Knox, September 17, 1990

Gürbüz Dogan Eksioglu, March 22, 1993

Jacques de Loustal, October 11, 1993

City of Dreams by Edward Sorel, February 22, 1999

Center of the Universe by Mark Ulriksen, January 10, 2000

Note:  My previous post on artist R. O. Blechman is here.


  1. What a wonderful selection. It always depresses me to think how many magazines have thrown off any interest in illustrated covers and simply replaced them with photographs of celebrities etc. The official BBC listings magazine Radio Times was once celebrated for encouraging the use of artists and this article does show a few of them...

  2. Thanks, Professor! I couldn't agree more. That's a great post by Mike Dempsey you linked to, and the comments there are rather spirited!