Erotica by Art Ross
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WWII Drawings

This gallery features the erotic drawings of Art Ross.  All the originals are on 8.5” x 11” manila paper. All are pencil drawings and some are accented in Prismacolor.  The artist produced most of these drawings from the comfort of his home in Detroit, MI - all during WW II. His initial inspiration for  the drawings came from the famous “We Can Do It” poster by J Howard Miller in early 1942. The subject for the poster was a woman operating a rivet gun at an automobile assembly plan in Michigan.

At that time, the artist was a Creative Designer for an auto manufacturer in Detroit. His duties required frequent visits the assembly plant where he quickly learned of the poster and linked it, although incorrectly, to the Federal Government’s new Rosie the Riveter ad campaign. As an odd historical twist, Art Ross produced his "Rosie the Riveter"  in late 1942, over five months before the Saturday Evening Post Memorial Day issue in 1943 featuring the "first" Rosie the Rivetor.

So Rosie was the first of his many erotic drawings and the artist’s personal favorite.
In late 1942 or early 1943, he started showing the works at his office. They were an emmence success; virtually everyone wanted one.  So he started giving them away - to friends, to colleagues, and to military personnel. By the end of the war, he estimated that he had given away over two hundred. Most, but not all, had a military or wartime theme. Today, only those shown here remain in his family’s collection and only four of these, like Fleet’s In have a WW II theme.

The work Ballerina was inspired by a 1940, feature length animation. Some very chubby elephants and hippopotamuses dancing ballet and wearing tutus were so beautifully illustrated. The very large, graceful animals fascinated the artist. Here is his interpretation of large and graceful, without the tutu.

You will, no doubt, notice that none of the drawings are signed or dated. He really didn’t take them too seriously. So historically, this narative is moot. But he reminded me, his oldest son, many times throughout the years, that his Rosie scooped the Saturday Evening Post's Rosie.


Copyright © 2008 Ross Limited Editions, Inc