Ukraine-Born American Artist Boris Artzybasheff’s Anti-Nazi Illustrations
Boris Artzybasheff (25 May 1899 – 16 July 1965) created many of these abstract anti-Axis illustrations for America’s Wickwire Spencer Steel Company (1901 – 1963) in World War II.
Born in Kharkiv, Ukraine, Boris Artzybasheff was the son of noted Russian writer, Mikhail Artsybashev, who told him shortly before the outbreak of the First World War, “Get out of Russia, don’t sponge on my reputation, and change your name.”
Artzybasheff became a prolific illustrator for magazines such as Life, Fortune and Time, for which he produced scores of covers. He illustrated around 50 books, including his own work As I See, and ads for, among many, Xerox, Shell, Pan Am, Casco Power Tools and Scotch Tape. And these for the Wickwire Spencer Steele are choice.
“I try to shake this thought off: It may be that a healthy planet should have no more life upon it than a well-kept dog has fleas; but what possesses the flea to concoct its own flea powder?” – Boris Artzybasheff
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