Friday, February 16, 2018

E. Simms Campbell: The Flaming Gourmet

What strikes me about E. Simms Campbell's cartoon for the July 1961 Playboy is how it tries to be sexy even though the gag doesn't require it. The redheaded woman in the low-cut gown is statuesque and imposing, standing a full head taller than her husband, perhaps a full chef's hat taller. Despite the height difference, her criticism is rightly intended to put him down further than nature already has. I think there's a deliberately unspoken idea here which goes beyond the cartoon to the message of the magazine, ensuring even the diminutive, ne'er-do-well male reader that there's a tall, curvy woman available for him despite his all-too-apparent shortcomings.

E. Simms Campbell
"You...and your flaming gourmet dishes!"

Original art
Playboy, July 1961, page 71

E. Simms Campbell
Christie's Sale 2367, The Year of the Rabbit:  The Playboy Collection, Lot 27

New York, December 8, 2010

Note:  It's time for us to explore the art of E. Simms Campbell (1906-1971), a leading African-American cartoonist. Attempted Bloggery seeks scans or photographs of original Campbell art or obscure published works.

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