An enormous amount of beautiful artwork was routinely thrown out.
The individual designer’s furniture at GM consisted of a wooden drawing table, a taboret, an uncomfortable broken chair, and a large wooden table with a large flat drawer for artwork. We also had an even larger drawer in the back room for storage. At the rate we went through paper, we accumulated a lot of artwork. A lot was pitched, but there were always renderings and drawings that were special whether it was appreciated by others or not. It was hard to throw that away. Often a designer would be transferred to a different studio and leave a drawer full of artwork. It would stay there for some time until the space was needed usually by another designer trying to find room for his own stuff. Then it was usually pitched.
But some was rescued. I’ll post the more interesting pieces that I have accumulated as I run across them. If other designers have artwork laying around that they’d like to share, please email scans of the artwork to me along with a caption. They need to be at 650 pixels across or larger.
Tony Balthasar was cleaning out his drawer one day when I was in Pontiac Two Studio, held up this rendering, and shouted, “anyone want this?” I still have it. It is dated 1957 and looks like a 1960 Olds proposal, signed MacAdam. Prismacolor pencil on black Canson with gauche highlights.
No time for oil paintings.
Most studio artwork created before the digital age were quick sketches and renderings created using temporary mediums such as markers and chalk on vellum. Marker ink never really dried, and as the vellum would yellow with age the ink would bleed. Eventually the art would self destruct. Kind of like planned obsolescence. Mediums that would last like gauche or Prismacolor pencil on Canson held up pretty well, but those techniques were out of vogue by the time I got to GM.
Unknown GM artist
A Gray Counts rendering.
These ad agency renderings were done by Charles Kemp.
Sketches by Jerry Hirschberg