Archive for the ‘artzybasheff’ Category

Monday, September 15th, 2014

Illustration: Artzybasheff’s Diablerie

Artzybasheff Diablerie
Plowman, plowman, what of thy hands?

Recently, Danish political cartoons have created a firestorm of controversy all over the world. It shouldn’t be surprising that cartoons can evoke this sort of uproar; after all, back in the late 1800s Thomas Nast’s caricatures brought down Boss Tweed, and in the 1970s, Herb Block was a major thorn in Nixon’s side.

World War II was a prime era for political cartoonists. Passions ran high, and the whole world was at stake. Artists like Arthur Szyk and Boris Artzybasheff crystalized the passions and horrors of war in a way that speaks to us across the decades. Here is a selection of illustrations on the theme of war from Boris Artzybasheff’s book As I See.

In his introduction to the chapter entitled "Diablerie", Artzybasheff writes:

"Let’s sing hosannas to men this day, for theirs is the triumph of wit! In their long search for better tools and weapons, men at last have found the way of locking a pinch of cosmic force in a sheath of silver-white metal… as well as the means for making it go boom. Any time they wish, or think they must, men can touch off an orgasmic flash, making the oceans boil and seethe with fire, making the soil rise up in crimson dust… Perhaps after the cloud drifts thrice around it, the earth will emerge once more free of living things… In the hush of night this comely planet will go on waltzing in its ordained orbit until God awakens from His sleep and resolves it back to the primordial elements.

I try to shake this thought off; it may be that a healthy planet should have no more life upon it than a well-kept dog has fleas; but what posesses the flea to concoct its own flea powder?"

Artzybasheff Diablerie

Artzybasheff Diablerie
The Headless Horseman

Artzybasheff Diablerie
In Pursuit of Zeros

Artzybasheff Diablerie
Jet Propulsion: V-One

Artzybasheff Diablerie
Radio Propaganda

Artzybasheff Diablerie

Artzybasheff Diablerie

Artzybasheff Diablerie

Artzybasheff Diablerie

Artzybasheff Diablerie
The Pied Piper of Berchtesgaden

Artzybasheff Diablerie

Artzybasheff Diablerie
The Balance of Power

Artzybasheff Diablerie
The Triumph of Wit

Artzybasheff Diablerie
The Witches’ Sabbath

Many people who read this blog aren’t aware that Animation Resources isn’t just a website… it is much more than that. We are archiving these images at high resolution for the use of students, artists and researchers. As an example, here is an image of Hitler’s eye from the image above at the full resolution of our archival scan…

Artzybasheff Diablerie

Stephen Worth
Director
Animation Resources

IllustrationIllustration

This posting is part of a series of articles comprising an online exhibit spotlighting Illustration.

Tuesday, August 6th, 2013

Illustration: Artzybasheff’s Neurotica

Artzybasheff Neurotica

Naught so sweet as Melancholy

One of the key concepts that an animator deals with every day is anthropomorphism… In most cases, this is applied to animals or teapots, but this aspect of caricature has barely been explored in mainstream animated films. Boris Artzybasheff was a master of anthropomorphism. He was able to give life and personality not only to animals, machines and objects, but to ideas.

Artzybasheff had a long career as an illustrator, beginning in the late 1920s with art deco style illustrations for books like Creatures, extending all the way through the 1950s. His most notable achievements are his cover illustrations for Time magazine, depicting a wide range of contemporary people in the news; and also his arresting images for magazine ads promoting Shell Oil, Xerox and Parker Pens.

Animation Resources is lucky to have a friend like Mike Fontanelli. His library of books on cartooning is one of the best in the country. Mike has agreed to share his collection with us. The first book he selected to loan us to be digitized is one of the rarest books in his collection… Artzybasheff’s "As I See". The first section of this book is titled "Neurotica" and it is a visual depiction of extreme states of mind.

Artzybasheff Neurotica

Artzybasheff Neurotica

Artzybasheff Neurotica
Anxiety

Artzybasheff Neurotica
Frustration

Artzybasheff Neurotica
Timidity

Artzybasheff Neurotica
Repressed Hostility

Artzybasheff Neurotica
Indecision

Artzybasheff Neurotica
Infantalism

Artzybasheff Neurotica
Paranoia

Artzybasheff Neurotica
Schizophrenia

Artzybasheff Neurotica
Inferiority

Artzybasheff Neurotica
So pure, and so relaxing

Artzybasheff Neurotica
Hypochondria

Artzybasheff Neurotica
Manic-Depressive

Stephen Worth
Director
Animation Resources

IllustrationIllustration

This posting is part of a series of articles comprising an online exhibit spotlighting Illustration.

Wednesday, July 10th, 2013

Illustration: Artzybasheff’s Machinalia

Artzybasheff Machinalia

In his introduction to the section titled "Machinalia" in his book As I See, Boris Artzybasheff says, "I am thrilled by machinery’s force, precision and willingness to work at any task, no matter how arduous or monotonous it may be. I would rather watch a thousand ton dredge dig a canal than see it done by a thousand spent slaves lashed into submission. I like machines."

Artzybasheff Machinalia

Making of Steel: Charging the Open Hearth

Artzybasheff Machinalia

Tapping a Heat of Steel

Artzybasheff Machinalia

Filling Ingot Molds

Artzybasheff Machinalia

The Soaking Pit

Artzybasheff Machinalia

The Blooming Pit

Artzybasheff Machinalia

The Rod Mill

Artzybasheff Machinalia

Hydraulic Press

Artzybasheff Machinalia

Stranding of Wire Rope

Artzybasheff Machinalia

Weaving of Fence Fabric

Artzybasheff Machinalia

Wire Drawing Machines

Artzybasheff Machinalia

Spring Forming Presses

Artzybasheff Machinalia

Wire Cloth Looms

Artzybasheff Machinalia

Navy’s Mark III Calculator

Artzybasheff Machinalia

Executive of the Future

Recently, I was asked by a visitor to the Archive what relevance half century old cartoons and magazine illustrations have to the current animation scene. Well, this question is best answered with an example… Look at these amazing designs by Boris Artzybasheff originally published in the 1950s, and look at this clip from Fleischer’s Lost & Foundry.. It doesn’t take a great deal of imagination to be able to picture what a sequence in a current CGI film would look like if it had designs like Artzybasheff’s and animation like the Fleischers’.


Lost and Foundry (Fleischer/1937) at YouTube

Stephen Worth
Director
Animation Resources

IllustrationIllustration

This posting is part of a series of articles comprising an online exhibit spotlighting Illustration.