Brad Holland is one of the most influential illustrators of the 20th Century. The New York Times, in nominating him for a Pulitzer Prize, wrote that his work goes “beyond the moment to illuminate a general condition universal in space and time. The images are sometimes brutal, but the feeling is almost always compassionate.” The Washington Post has called him “an undisputed star of American Illustration,” and the editors of RSVP, the artists' directory, voted him “the one artist, who in our opinion, has had the single greatest impact on the illustration field during the last twenty five years.” Writing in Print magazine, critic Steven Heller has written, “as [Jackson] Pollock redefined plastic art, Holland has radically changed the perception of illustration.”
Holland’s work has been exhibited in the Musee des Arts Decoratifs, Paris; the U.S. Library of Congress; the Museum of American Illustration; the Mikkeli Art Museum in Mikkeli, Finland; the Musée des Beaux-Arts, Clermont-Ferrand, France. His work is included in the permanent collection of the Library of Congress, the National Portrait Gallery as well as corporate and private collections. Holland’s work has appeared in nearly every major U.S. and many international publications, and feature films. He has received the gold medals of the New York Art Director's Club, the Society of Publication Designers, the Society of Illustrators, and the Society’s prestigious Hamilton King Award. Holland is a member of the Society of Illustrators’ Hall of Fame and the Alliance Graphique Internationale.
Holland’s writings have appeared in diverse publications. The German magazine Jitter published Express Yourself, It’s Later Than You Think, a satire of the art business (first published in the Atlantic Monthly); Holland’s essay Shape and Content was published as the introduction to Illustration Now! (Taschen Books); Communication Arts published License to Infringe and First Things About Secondary Rights appeared in the Columbia Journal of Law & the Arts.
In recent years Brad Holland has emerged as the seminal voice illuminating the complex and shifting business landscape for illustrators and their diminishing control over their copyrights and businesses. He is one of the founders of the Illustrators’ Partnership of America (IPA), the first organization in the history of American visual authorship to seek to implement a rational collective rights clearance administration for illustrators’ copyrights.
In 1999, IPA’s founders created the first National Illustrators’ Conference, proposed the creation of a visual arts collecting society, founded the IPA, and initiated a Reprographics Coalition to unite 12 American illustration organizations to establish accountability for illustrators’ royalties. In 2002, Brad Holland and IPA Board member Cynthia Turner were invited to represent creators at The 100th American Assembly: “Art, Technology, and Intellectual Property” at Arden House in Harriman, New York. Their subsequent report first alerted illustrators to the goals of the Free Culture movement.
In 2005, Holland and Turner warned that the U.S. Copyright Office Orphan Works Study might portend a radical change in U.S. copyright law. Forty-two organizations and 1,600 individual artists signed Holland and Turner’s submission to the Copyright Office, urging the government to maintain existing copyright protections. Holland and Turner also proposed a visual art collecting society to the Copyright Office as a hedge against orphaned work.
Brad Holland participated in the Copyright Office Orphan Works Roundtables, the webcast Washington College of Law Orphan Works Debate, and testified against the Orphan Works Act before both the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate Intellectual Property subcommittees. Holland gave interviews with National Public Radio, Chicago Tribune, National Law Journal, Chronicle of Higher Education and Bureau of National Affairs. Holland’s weekly mass e-mail “Orphan Works Updates,” were widely posted on the websites of creators’ organizations. IPA’s Press Release, “Amendment May Orphan Creative Artists,” was distributed by the Associated Press and published by Forbes.com, PR Newswire, United Business Media, the Internet Herald and television station websites. The Progress & Freedom Foundation Center for Study of Digital Property selected the IPA Orphan Works Resource Page to link to its Copyright Resource Index.
Brad serves as Co-Chair of American Society of Illustrators Partnership, the formalized non-profit incorporation by member organizations of the Illustrators’ Partnership Reprographics Coalition.