For more than four decades, Vincent Di Fate has enjoyed an international reputation as one of the world's leading artistic visionaries of the future. People Magazine has said that he is one of the top illustrators of science fictionDi Fate is not all hard-edge and airbrush slickness. His works are always paintings a bit of his brushwork shows and they are all the better because of it. And Omni Magazine made the observation that moody and powerful, the paintings of Vincent Di Fate depict mechanical marvels and far frontiers of a future technocracy built on complicated machinery and human resourcefulness. Di Fate is something of a grand old man in the highly specialized field of technological space art. Stirring images of far-flung environments have been his trademark In his prolific career, he has produced art of science fiction, astronomical and aerospace subjects for such clients as IBM, The Reader's Digest, The National Geographic Society, and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.
Di Fate has received many awards for his work, including the Frank R. Paul Award for Outstanding Achievement in Science Fiction Illustration (1978), the Hugo Award (Science Fiction Achievement Award) for Best Professional Artist (1979), the Skylark Award for Imaginative Fiction (1987), the Lensman Award for Lifetime Contribution to the Science Fiction Field (1990), the Chesley Award from the Association of Science Fiction/Fantasy Artists for Lifetime Artistic Achievement (1998), the Rondo Award (2004), and was he was inducted into the Science Fiction Hall of Fame in 2011. He was also Guest of Honor at the 50th World Science Fiction Convention in Orlando, Florida in 1992 and has been an honored guest at regional SF and fantasy conventions throughout the U.S. and Canada since the late 1960s.
The artist has had his paintings exhibited in group and one-man shows at museums and galleries throughout North America, Europe, Asia and Japan. These include important solo exhibitions at the Reading Museum in Pennsylvania, the Museum of Science and Natural History in St. Louis, Missouri, and at the Hayden Planetarium (American Museum of Natural History) in New York City. His work is included in the collections of the National Air and Space Museum (Smithsonian Institution) and the U. S. Air Force Art Collection in Washington, D. C., the Society of Illustrators in New York, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration gallery at Cape Canaveral, Florida, the New Britain Museum of American Art in Connecticut, and in the University of Kansas Center for Science Fiction Studies at Lawrence. He was commissioned by NASA in 1985 to create the official painting of the International Space Station currently being assembled in Earth orbit. That painting, completed in 1987, is on display at the Kennedy Space Center at Cape Canaveral. His art is also included in many corporate and private collections.
Di Fate has produced three major books, Di Fate's Catalog of Science Fiction Hardware (Workman Publishing Co, 1980), Infinite Worlds: The Fantastic Visions of Science Fiction Art (Penguin Studio Books, 1997) and The Science Fiction Art of Vincent Di Fate (Paper Tiger, 2002). The award winning Infinite Worlds is the first comprehensive history of science fiction art in America. In addition, Di Fate has lectured extensively about the history, methods and meaning of his craft and has been a consultant for MCA/Universal, 20th Century-Fox, Walt Disney Productions and MGM/United Artists. He is a professor of Illustration at the Fashion Institute of Technology (State University of New York) in New York City, and was the co-creator and formerly the Acting Chair of FIT's MA in Illustration program. He also worked on the expansion of that program to an MFA in 2010. He's served two terms as president of the Society of Illustrators (1995-1997), an organization of which he is a Life Member, chaired the Permanent Collection Committee for the Museum of America Illustration from 1985 to 1995, and has served on the Illustration Committee for the Sanford Low Collection of the New Britain Museum of American Art since 1993. He is also a founding member and past president of the Association of Science Fiction/Fantasy Artists.
Di Fate studied at the Phoenix in New York City (later incorporated into the Pratt Institute as the Pratt Manhattan Center) and holds a Master of Arts degree in Illustration from Syracuse University.