Axis in Agony. Presenting a Series of Caricatures From the Brush of Boris Artzybasheff.
New York: Wickwire Spencer Steel Company, 1944. First edition. Paperback. Item #30498
7.5" x 5.5". [44pp.] Bound in the original stapled paper wrappers. Fine condition. This very uncommon book includes darkly humorous illustrations by Artzybasheff...as the first leaf says, "He hates in paint!" To call these drawings bizarre is understating the case. One shows a two headed goose carcass sitting on a conveyor belt heading into a fiery furnace. The two heads are Hitler and Tojo; Mussolini's head is the butt end of the bird. Another drawing shows a Wickwire Company "Steel - Wire Warrior" pummeling Tojo. Artzybasheff's work is often surreal, but his image here of an ape Hitler that appears to be sodomizing an agonized Tojo monkey in a cage is very discomforting. This book is quite scarce. Partly published as a patriotic piece of advertising. Some of the illustrations were apparently also issued as posters, but they rarely appear in commerce.