This humorous yet disturbing Americana illustration from 1951 captures the exasperation of an archetypical housewife in the early baby boom years. Artist Stan Galli shows a pretty yet steamingly frustrated young mother tossing her children into a fountain in the center of Anytown USA, hinting at both the immediate frustrations of the story (of her rambunctious boys day with her icy mother-in-law) and the larger sense of bewilderment many American women felt at as men returned home after World War II, and began sweeping women out of the workplace and back into the home. The painting appeared as an interior illustration in the January, 1951 edition of Today’s Woman, illustrating a story by Gertrude Carrick titled “Being A Mother Yourself – You’ll Understand“.
Stan Galli was a San Francisco based commercial illustrator who was inducted into the Illustrator’s Hall Of Fame in 1981. During World War II, he illustrated training manuals for the U.S. Navy, moving to New York from California in the late 1940s, where he worked for premiere mainstream magazines like Ladies Home Journal and The Saturday Evening Post, alongside illustrators like Stevan Dohanos and Jack Dumas.
Galli is best remembered for his United Airline travel posters in the 1950’s and 1960’s, which are hotly collectible today.