Tuesday, 22 April 2014

Bernard Safran Art !

Bernard Safran .

Bernard Safran - Self Portrait 

Was born in Brooklyn, New York in 1924. A great artist who is in truth was more famous for his paintings on the covers for the famous Time Magazine .From 1957 through to 1965 he produced 73 covers for Time and illustrated stunning portrait covers of top political and religious leaders .

But during the years from 1947 up to 1957 he was a commercial artist and needed money to support his family, these may have not been some of his greatest moments in the art world but to lovers of pulp art they are true classics !

I will show the art and with some book covers that I own and some more photo's of him in his studio around this period.

Bernard Safran in his studio in Bronxville.
Below is the original art and the Croydon cover (the guy in foreground is Bernard Safran with cigar in hand) Bernard was payed just $100 for this art !!!

Croydon # 85
Below are a selection of great Safran covers from my collection .

Stallion Book # 214

Croydon #37

Croydon #48
Bernard as you can see from above did a lot of art for the Croydon book company. And as is widely known these were produced just for the money and although superb to look at, he was in truth just going through the motions, art like this was in big demand around the early 1950's and Bernard like others was in the right place at the right time .

Love Cult - Croydon # 52

Original Art for 'Love Cult' - 1953

Warped Desires 'Croydon' # 53 below again great art with dancing lady center stage and sax player in background honking away, but the character in the foreground again is a self portrait of Bernard himself !

Croydon # 53
Here are some great Safran art covers from the mighty Croydon books !

Croydon # 32

Croydon # 51 

Bernard was also a highly rated photographer in his later years and his photo's of life in New York City in the 1970's are superb but he also took pre plan photo's for his art in the early 50's and here is a photo with Bernard looking slightly lecherous posing with model (used on cover below 'Secrets Of A Paris Nights' # 41.

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Below is some great original art (that I do NOT own) from again the early 1950's
Girl-Crazy Professor # 46

Art used on Croydon # 46 

Art used on Croydon # 70 - Confessions Of A ladies Chauffeuer

Art used on Croydon # 62 - Night club Sinner
Here is another selection below of covers I own which all have Bernard's face on the cover.

Croydon # 67

Croydon # 17

Croydon #57
Mountain Sinner below before and after !!

Original artwork 

Croydon Book # 28
On this great cover 'Back-Road Motel' according to his family both gents here are based on the image of Bernard Safran and the woman is based on his wife !

 This original art by Safran of 'High-Priced Party Girl'

Croydon Book # 33
Original art by Safran of 'French Nurse' was sold in 2016 for $1400 ! used on Croyon covers # 30 and # 79.

Croydon Book # 79 (2nd edition)
Here is an example of Bernard Safrans work on the left and the inferior French edition which was crudely redrawn a few years later, This was normal for 'Les Romans Americains' who never just copied they either traced the original before letting some non-artiste lose with some crayons to finish the job !

Croydon # 59 

If you compare his work during the early 50's to his stunning portrait work for 'Time' magazine during the 60's you can easily see that his early work was rather crude in comparison to his beautiful later work . But even so his pulp art has a certain charm and I for one love this style and period of his art.

Just to finish off here are some beautiful covers from the Croydon/Safran stable !
Croydon # 33

Croydon # 34

Croydon # 43
Croydon # 18

Bernard Safran died from a sudden heart attack in 1995 . He leaves behind his widow Adele and two daughters Barbara and Elizabeth .

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