Robert Tonner

Larry Berk Artist-in-Residence Series

Spring 2016
Artist, Fashion Designer, Entrepreneur and Founder of the Tonner Doll Company


Robert Tonner


Robert Tonner’s early interest in creating immaculately detailed drawings led to a career in fashion. After graduating from Parsons School of Design, Tonner was hired by Bill Blass, designing the Blassport label for many years. Throughout his 7th Avenue career, Tonner’s spin on modern American dressing continually caught the eye of the fashion world’ s trend-spotters—his designs were frequently featured in Women’s Wear Daily, Town & Country, New York Magazine, The New York Times and Vogue. 

Tonner’s long-time fascination with doll art inspired him to try his hand at sculpting original figures. In 1985, Tonner received a glowing review from the National Institute of American Doll Artists (NIADA) for a model-like fashion doll he created for critique. During the years that followed, Tonner turned more of his attention to developing and perfecting his doll designs. Established in 1991, The Tonner Doll Company designs and manufactures high quality collectible dolls of all types—from classic character dolls, to well-known movie and television characters, to high-fashion dolls with stylish runway-ready clothing. 

For more information visit www.tonnerdollcom.



As part of his residency, he will display his work in the gallery, give talks, as well as meet with Fashion and Art students.

Gallery Show of Fashion Styles, Illustrations, Photos and Dolls
Thursday, March 10 - April -15

Opening Slide Lecture and Presentation
Thursday, March 10, 7:00 p.m.,
College Lounge, Vanderlyn Hall
Mr. Tonner will talk about his work before the opening of his show in the gallery.
Reception in gallery immediately following the presentation.

Lecture and Demonstration
Wednesday, March 30, 1:00 p.m.- 2:00 pm, Boroughs Hall 120

"Observations of a Reluctant Businessman"
Mr. Tonner will give a lecture and demonstrate work processes in this event.

Class Visits
March 14 - April 4 
Mr. Tonner will be visiting Fashion and Art classes to review and critique work - 4 classroom visits.






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