The Beauty of Pinup and Commercial Art

This is a blog about men and women as seen throughout the history of advertising and pinup art. Art has always reflected the distinct diversity and beauty of both sexes respectively. Just as there is a moon, there is a sun, a night and day, cold and hot...male and female. It is the very sustenance of Nature.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

It's cooler inside...

This is a 1954 ad for Arrow shirts. Here we see the divide between the male and female worlds, clearly defined by the opened house door running down the middle of the picture. On the left is the home, with the woman in charge, having the kids and everything under her control. She is thoughtful, caring and ready to give comfort to those she love most. On the right, we see the man of the house headed to his domain. It is obviously a hot summer day as he dries the sweat off his forehead with a handkerchief. He's been out there, working hard, making a living to support his wife and children. The wife is aware of all he does to support them, she's conscious of his hard work and responsibility and now she wants to surprise him with...Arrow shirts. Clearly, the advertisers wanted to sent the message that an Arrow shirt is for the real man who knows how to take care of his life and the lives of others. He deserves to be rewarded with a nice house, a good wife and two beautiful children, here represented by a boy and girl symbolizing the balance of the sexes.

The wife is smiling imagining his reaction when he comes through the door and is surprised with the shirts. Although it may be well meaning, in my opinion this ad doesn't make much sense. The ad suggests it is very hot outside. I don't think this man is really looking forward to be surprised by shirts, but rather a very nice, ice cold drink instead! The ad puts the wife in an absurd position. It stretches the reality that Arrow shirts will keep you cool on a hot summer day.

Nevertheless, the ad does work in emphasizing the differences between the male and female world.


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