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Joseph Csatari   Click Images to Enlarge

Joseph Csatari
Before Baseball Practice
Oil on masonite
27 1/8 x 17 in.
Joseph Csatari

(American, 1926-)

Joseph Csatari is one of America's most revered illustrators. As a boy, Csatari learned to paint by copying Norman Rockwell Saturday Evening Post covers and he was thrilled when Rockwell allowed him to paint alongside him in New York and at his home. Prior to his meeting Rockwell, he studied at the New Academy of Arts in Newark, NJ and at Pratt Institute in NYC.

Csatari trained with Norman Rockwell for eight years. He joined the staff of the Boy Scouts of America in 1953 as a layout artist. By 1960, Csatari was its art director, designing advertisements and sales promotional pieces, cover illustrations and posters. In 1973, Csatari became art director of Boys' Life magazine. During his years at Boy's Life, he worked closely with Norman Rockwell and made rough sketches as suggestions for subject matter for Rockwell's cover paintings. Once a Csatari theme was selected, models were brought to Rockwell's Stockbridge, MA studio where paintings were completed. In 1976, when Rockwell retired from the Calendar commissions for Boy's Life, Csatari took his place as lead illustrator. Csatari compliments his mentor and friend Norman Rockwell, "Norman was in another league. He was a great storyteller and humorist, a kind of pictorial Mark Twain." In 1977, Csatari launched a successful freelance career.

Csatari has painted 24 paintings for the Boy Scouts of America and in 1997 his art for that society toured the U.S. Csatari's work has appeared in Saturday Evening Post, Time, Reader's Digest, McCall's, Field & Stream and Outdoor Life and he has painted many book covers for Simon & Schuster, Avon Books and Bantam Doubleday and Dell. He has created illustrations for Nabisco, Roy Rogers, Coleman, State Farm Insurance and more and his Spirit of Competition hangs in the National Collegiate Football Hall of Fame in Cincinnati. He also has been commissioned to paint postage stamps in 1979 (Seeing for Me) and a sheet of Red Cross stamps and do covers for Spock’s World, Star Trek and other novels. His commissioned portraits include Portrait of Mrs. Betty Ford, actor James Whitmore and various politicians.

Awards include Award for Excellence in Editorial Art from the Art Director's Club of NJ (1977) and a Gold Medal for Editorial Art Directing from the Society of Illustrators in NY (1970). He is a member of the Society of Illustrators in New York City and the Artist League of Central Jersey.

Joseph Csatari is considered one of the finest American illustrators and his work is in great demand. This painting was prized by the artist who says, "It is one of my best pieces."

References: Norman Rockwell & Joseph Csatari, Artists for the Boy Scouts of America, The Anchorage Museum of History and Art, Jan. 6-Mar. 3, 2002; Norman Rockwell, My Friend and Mentor, Joseph Csatari; The Record, December 31, 2001; Rockwell & Csatari, Boy Scout Calendar Artists, Boy Scouts of America.