Artist Pierre Mion Biography


Pierre Mion is well known as an illustrator and as a fine artist.  Mion says “While my main goal is to satisfy my creative drive, I have a strong need to both inform and please other people with my art.  Great joy for me is capturing the fragile beauty of our planet”.

ILLUSTRATION:        Commissioned to illustrate a great variety of subjects including historical, oceanographic, architectural, geological, mining, forestry, environmental and transportation, Pierre Mion is best known for his outer space paintings.  His works have been exhibited worldwide and are included in the NASA fine arts collection and the Smithsonian National Air & Space Museum’s collection.  Mr. Mion’s career as an illustrator began at Creative Arts Studio in Washington, D.C. where he soon became art director.  Four years later he launched his freelance career.  Some notable clients are: The National Geographic Society, Smithsonian Magazine, Look, Life, Popular Science, Readers Digest, Air & Space Magazine, Newmont Gold Co., Westvaco, Stone Mountain Park, Reynolds Aluminum, IBM, Comsat General, Ocean Systems, U.S. Rubber, Rand McNally, Random House, Bantam Books, Collier Publishing, CBS, Japan Broadcasting Company, WETA Public T.V., National Park Service, U.S. Postal Service, U.S. Treasury, USIA, several branches of the U.S. Armed Forces, NASA, and the Smithsonian Institution.

During his career Pierre has worked with Jacques Cousteau, Gilbert Grosvenor*, Edwin Link, Carl Sagan, Harold Edgerton, Wernher Von Braun, Isaac Asimov, Arthur C. Clark, Sylvia Earle, Robert Ballard, George Bass, Michael Collins and many of the other astronauts.  Since 1987 Mr. Mion has designed a number of postage stamps and post cards for the U.S. Postal Service.  His most recent stamp is the bicentennial stamp of Washington, D.C.

FINE ART:         In 1967 Mr. Mion entered into the field of fine art, paralleling his career in illustration.  The demanding discipline necessary to the illustrator is evident in his paintings, many of which reflect his love of nature.  His subjects range from western landscapes, farm scenes, old buildings and houses, street scenes, boats, water and sea shore scenes, people, portraits and animals.  His media are oil, acrylic, gouache, watercolor, pastel and pencil.  Some private collectors include:  Edwin Link, Gilbert Grosvenor, Senator Barry Goldwater, Robert Ballard, Michael Collins, Hubert Schlosberg, Michael Winston, Wilbur Garrett, Richard Berlanti and Norman Rockwell.

RESEARCH ASSIGNMENTS:        Mr. Mion has participated in numerous research assignments, many for the National Geographic Society.  A smattering include:  working with Jacques Cousteau in Monaco, covering the great Alaskan earthquake, South African and South American gold mines, and testing deep diving submersibles in the Bahamas.  During the Vietnam conflict Mr. Mion worked simultaneously for the U.S. Marine Corp. and the National Geographic doing combat art and story illustrations.  Mr. Mion was a member of the Apollo 16 recovery team aboard the U.S.S. Ticonderoga in the south Pacific and covered many rocket launches at Cape Kennedy.  Traveling across the United States on a motorcycle Mr. Mion conducted solar architecture research for the Smithsonian Institution.

SPECIAL ASSIGNMENT:        In 1966 Norman Rockwell** called on Pierre Mion to assist him with a series of space paintings for Look Magazine.  For the next twelve years they collaborated on a number of assignments for both Look and IBM until Rockwell’s death in 1978.  During this period Mr. Mion ghosted one of Mr. Rockwell’s paintings and worked directly on several others.

EXHIBITED:         National Gallery of Art; Smithsonian air and Space Museum;  Smithsonian Museum of Natural History;  National Geographic Society; Hayden Planetarium; Chicago Museum of Science and Industry;  NASA Museum, Houston, Texas;  Hudson River Museum;  Marine Corps Combat Art Museum;, The Society of Illustrators, New York City; The Academy of the Arts, Easton, Maryland;  Brevard Art Center and Museum, Melbourne, Florida;  Art Directors Club, New York City;  Utrecht, the Netherlands;  Belgrade Yugoslavia;  Tokyo, Japan;  Cologne, Germany; Madrid, Toledo, Seville, Barcelona, Spain.  In 2005 The National Geographic held a retrospective exhibit of 100 illustrations at the Norman Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge, MA including 5 works by Pierre Mion.  This show is currently traveling to various museums and galleries throughout the U.S.

George Washington University, Washington, D.C.
Corcoran School of Art, Washington, D.C.
Montgomery College, Rockville, Md.
Private study with Eliot O’Hara and Norman Rockwell

MILITARY:        U. S. Marine Corps

MEMBER:        International Association of Astronomical Artists; former, Society of Illustrators.

LISTED:         Who’s Who in American Art, Who’s Who in the West

* ”As an illustrator:  Pierre Mion is exceptionally gifted.  His paintings of both undersea and space exploration have been widely acclaimed.  His accomplishments in the fine arts have proven equally successful.  His creativity, like his life style is bold and exciting.” Gilbert Grosvenor, President, Chairman of the Board, National Geographic Society.

** ”Pierre Mion has packed a lot of remarkable experience and fine work into what, to me, seems a short career.  When working with me he has always been so kind, intelligent and understanding.  He has a great deal of talent.”  Norman Rockwell