Legendary visual effects artist, futurist and industrial designer Syd Mead died Monday at age 86, his manager Roger Servick confirmed to Deadline. Mead had been battling lymphoma, Servick said.
The artist is best known for his concept art for sci-fi movies, , , Tron, , Johnny Mnemonic, Mission Impossible 3, and . In the ’90s, Mead also supplied designs for Japanese anime series,Yamato 2520 and Turn A Gundam.
In addition to TV and movies, Mead worked as an industrial and architectural designer for such companies as Ford, Volvo, Intercontinental Hotels and Honda.
Mead’s designs for both film and TV defined how sci-fi could eventually lead to real-world designs. “I’ve called science fiction ‘reality ahead of schedule,'” Mead said in a New York Times interview in 2008.
In May, CNET’s Roadshow
featured of futuristic-looking Volvo trucks. Mead worked as a designer for a time at Volvo Trucks, though his version of the vehicles never saw production.
Fans flooded Twitter with tributes to the beloved concept artist.
“A legend has left us today,” one user tweeted. “His vision changed our culture, our collective perception of what is possible, and inspired so many of us today.” Tweeted another fan: “Without him, the visual language of science fiction wouldn’t have been the same.”
And another wrote, “Few have had the impact on how we visualize the future that he did; cyberpunk as a genre to a large extent has a look codified by him. Was always a joy to watch something with his touch — most recently for me Yamato 2520, where his designs stood out.”