Cinema/Chicago News

Remembering Victor Skrebneski

Chicago International Film Festival Founder Michael Kutza and photographer Victor Skrebneski. Photo by Timothy M. Schmidt.

We are saddened by the passing of legendary photographer Victor Skrebneski. Victor‘s iconic black and white poster images shot for the Chicago International Film Festival captured such Festival honorees as Orson Welles, Faye Dunaway, Sharon Stone, Steven Spielberg, and more.

“Victor has been a friend and supporter of the Festival from the very beginning,” said Festival Founder Michael Kutza. “Since that day, back in 1965, when I asked him to spice things up for our Festival poster, he has delivered some of the most iconic and memorable images the city has seen. His portraits of such film legends as Sharon Stone, François Truffaut and Orson Welles are timeless.”

Born in 1929 in Chicago, Skrebneski attended the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and the Illinois Institute of Technology. Skrebneski set up his own studio in Chicago in 1952 and got his first big break in 1962 as the exclusive photographer for Estee Lauder’s ad campaign “the Estee Lauder woman.”

Known for his celebrity portraits, Skrebneski took the first notable photos of Cindy Crawford, and captured the likeness of everyone from Oprah Winfrey to Audrey Hepburn, David Bowie to Barack and Michelle Obama. In 1989, The School of the Art Institute of Chicago featured an exhibit of his work. A fifty-year retrospective of his work was organized by The Museum of Contemporary Photography in 1999.

We thank Victor for his immeasurable contributions to the Chicago International Film Festival and mourn his passing.

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