Born in Le Locle, Switzerland, François Berthoud graduated from the School for Graphic Design, Lausanne in 1982, before moving between Paris, Milan and New York. His early fashion illustrations were championed by Anna Piaggi in Vanity Fair, and his work has since appeared in publications such as Vogue and Numéro as well as advertisements for brands including Viktor&Rolf, Bulgari and Tiffany.
In 2014, he drew upon his background as a cartoonist to produce an animated comic strip for Prada’s Candy Florale perfume. Berthoud’s experimental style is renowned for its precision and elegant eroticism, and his hand-made aesthetic employs the increasingly unusual technique of linocutting in order to capture both mood and moment with irony and artistry.
François Berthoud is now recognised as one of the most original fashion illustrators of the late 20th and early 21st Century. More and more avant-garde fashion designers ask him to create their corporate images. Anna Piaggi has written about him: “While François illustrates fashion in an apparently formal and decorative way, in reality he analyzes his subject in depth and with an elegant sense of detachment before recreating it in his atelier-laboratory…. he experiences fashion with a sharp sense of irony and a visual culture rooted in conceptual art. But his style is totally now!”
Berthoud’s career has been largely spent working out of a studio in Milan. In 2007 he returned to Switzerland and set up a studio in Zurich.