This playfully spirited and sexy original oil on canvas pin-up painting by Edward Runci was published by the Shaw-Barton Calendar Company in 1947 with the title “Wish You Were Here.” The artist was an outstanding painter of pin-ups during the 1940s and 50s whose smooth style was much admired by his contemporaries. Unlike the majority of other commercial artists who came out of the Sundblom School, Runci applied his paint in thin flat brush strokes that created a soft focus almost photo-realist effect. In this early offering by the artist, a lingerie-clad young redhead pulls a box of stationary out to write a flirtatious note to her faraway beau (likely still stationed overseas in the immediate aftermath of World War II).
From the collection of Charles Martignette, painting was reproduced as figure 631 in The Great American Pin-Up by Charles G. Martignette and Louis K. Meisel (Taschen, 1996), and also appears as a full color plate illustration on page 4 in The Pin-Up Poster Book — The Edward Runci Collection, by Charles G. Martignette and Louis K. Meisel (Collectors Press, 1997).
Original pin-up paintings by the artist Edward Runci are very rare and most were owned by Louis Meisel and Charles Martignette. For comparison purposes – in 2013 the painting below, published in 1950 with the title “Scenic Shorelines” sold at auction for a commanding $62,500.00!