- Category : 1896-births
- Type : PE
- Profile : 4/6 - Opportunistic / Role Model
- Definition : Triple Split
- Incarnation Cross : RAX Explanation 1
Peruvian painter of pin-up girls, often considered one of the most famous of pin-up artists. Numerous Vargas paintings have sold and continue to sell for hundreds of thousands of dollars. His work was typically a combination of watercolour and airbrush.
Alberto Vargas moved to the United States in 1916 after studying art in Europe, Zurich, and Geneva prior to World War I. His early career in New York included work as an artist for the Ziegfeld Follies and for many Hollywood studios. Vargas' most famous piece of film work was for the poster of the 1933 film The Sin of Nora Moran, which shows a near-naked Zita Johann in a pose of desperation.
He became widely noted in the 1940s as the creator of iconic World War-II era pin-ups for Esquire magazine known as "Varga Girls." Between 1940 and 1946 Vargas produced 180 paintings for the magazine.
He struggled financially until 1959 when Playboy magazine began to use his work. Over the next 16 years he produced 152 paintings for the magazine. His career flourished and he had major exhibitions of his work all over the world.
Vargas' artistic work, paintings and color drawings, were periodically featured in some issues of Playboy magazine in the 1960s and 1970s.
The death of his wife Anna Mae in 1974 left him devastated, and he stopped painting. Anna Mae had been his model and business manager, his muse in every way. The publication of his autobiography in 1978 renewed interest in his work and brought him partially out of his self-imposed retirement to do a few works, such as album covers for The Cars (Candy-O, 1979) and Bernadette Peters (Bernardette Peters, 1980; Now Playing, 1981). He died of a stroke on 30 December 1982, at the age of 86.