""Harry Truman: I'm Sitting on Top of the World""   Lot no. 4772

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By Al Hirschfeld (1903 - 2003)

15" x 12.5", Framed 24.25" x 22.5"
Gouache and ink on paper
signed lower right



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Original cover for Collier's magazine, published January 20, 1954.

Harry Truman sits on top of a bomb with a lit fuse

Explore related art collections: Magazine Covers / 1950s / Celebrity / Patriotic/Political / Military/Soldiers / $5,000 - $20,000

See all original artwork by Al Hirschfeld



Albert Hirschfeld became famous for his personality caricatures of theater people, pen and ink work he did in his position as Theatre Caricaturist for The New York Times. He earned 23 awards including in 1984 a special Tony Award, which was a sign that the theater world welcomed him as one of their own. His work also appeared in other newspapers and books, and in 1996, a film documentary of his life titled The Line King, was nominated for an Academy Award. That same year Hirschfeld was named one of six New York City Landmarks by the New York Landmarks Conservancy.

He was a familiar figure at first-night openings, and rehearsals, and he perfected a method of making a sketch in the dark. To be one of his subjects was regarded as a special honor, and feelings of triumph often were felt by his followers who found the word "Nina" in his work. Nina was the name of his daughter, and he would hide the name in the lines of his caricatures.

Hirschfield was born in St. Louis. In New York, where he moved when he was 12 years old with his family, he studied at the Art Students League. At age 18, he became an art director for David O Selznick, the motion-picture producer, and then moved to Warner Bros.

In 1924, he went to Europe and in Paris attended the Academy Julian where he studied painting, sculpture, and drawing. During a trip to Bali, where the intense sun bleached out all color and "reduced people to walking line drawings" as he later said, he developed his life-long interest in drawing.

He married Dolly Haas, an actress, and after her death in 1994, he married Louise Kerz, a museum curator and research historian.