World War II Home Front Honey by Rolf Armstrong
Widely considered “The Father of American Pin-Up”, Rolf Armstrong‘s luminous portraits of famous actresses and idealized girls-next-door made him one of the highest paid commercial artists in America; his pictures are noted for their grace, vibrancy, and indescribable lifelike quality. During the 1940s, Armstrong created a host of glamorous pin-up portraits to inspire soldiers and remind them of what was waiting for them back at home.
This rousing pastel on masonite is one such example of Armstrong’s home front beauties. Set against a brilliantly colored background, a brunette beauty, posed by Armstrong model Jean Dodson, poses in a black gown and offers up an inviting, megawatt smile. This was created in 1942 for the Brown & Bigelow Calendar Company, and was published in subsequent calendar lines throughout the years, due to its popularity.
This is an exquisite example of Armstrong’s work and has never been sold at auction or on the public market until now. It was originally held in the estate of prolific collector, and self-proclaimed ‘King of the Pin-Ups’, Art Amsie, an early torchbearer for the pin-up collecting field.
A full page color plate of this illustration, as well as a photo of model Jean Dodson posing for the artist, can be found in the book Pin-Up Dreams: The Glamour Art of Rolf Armstrong by Janet Dobson and Michael Wooldridge. Examples of those pages are shown here, but are not included in the sale.