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Pin-up Girls: Pretty or Poison, We Love the Way They're Drawn / A Look at the BAD GIRLS of Vintage Pulp Fiction Novels and the Pretty Ladies of Pin Up Art

Dames Can Be Poison

Pin-up Girls: Pretty or Poison, We Love the Way They're Drawn / A Look at the BAD GIRLS of Vintage Pulp Fiction Novels and the Pretty Ladies of Pin Up Art

Antique Trader has a fun article on vintage "Pulp Fiction" novels with BAD GIRLS on the covers -- too cool!

They are talking about paperback books printed on pulpwood paper, with amazing and enticing four-color cover art, that sold for about 10-cents "back in the day".

They sell for a little bit more now, and some are very collectible, for the images, or for the authors, as they introduced many literary greats such as Edgar Rice Burroughs, Ray Bradbury, Raymond Chandler, and Robert Heinlein.

And some not-so-greats, too, of course. More about collecting those books below, but first let's look at the art of the covers.

The original art for the covers are hard to find, and highly sought after. Heritage Auctions  sells wonderful examples of the original art for the book covers, as well as some vintage pulp books.

Charles Martignette was a major collector of pulp and pinup girl original illustration art. Heritage Auctions sold his amazing collection. See the results from the 4,300 piece $20 million dollar Martignette Collection.

"It's no overstatement to say that Martignette's unceasing devotion to his collection has given us the single most important gathering of illustration artists and art to ever make its way to public auction," said Ed Jaster, Vice President of Heritage Auction Galleries. "Charles practically invented the field of illustration art collecting; he was a collector of unequaled passion. It's safe to say that this is a once in a lifetime opportunity to acquire some of the most important pieces of American illustration art we're likely to see for decades to come."
Beginning in the early 1970s Charles Martignette began what would become his life's work and lasting legacy. Before practically anyone thought of the works of artists like Gil Elvgren, Alberto Vargas and J.C. Leyendecker as serious art, Martignette went about systematically gathering the finest examples of their work. His collection eventually expanded to cover all facets and periods of illustration art. Names like Harvey Dunn, Norman Rockwell and Maxfield Parrish — among hundreds of others — soon populated his collection. He made it a mission to acquire and preserve the work of illustrators he considered important.
Martignette became the acknowledged authority on American illustration, particularly pin-up art. 
He is the co-author of The Great American Pin-up, the unquestioned bible of the form, and he garnered accolades as the author of several books, chief among them The Complete Works of Gil Elvgren." [Source]

Read more about Charles Martignette here.

Here is Heritage's video showing some of the items, and talking about Martignette.

Charles Martignette is the author of The Great American Pin-Up. It's a Taschen book, so you know it's gorgeous. With over 900 illustrations. Hit this Amazon link to view several pages inside the book.

Another gorgeous Taschen book by Martignette is on the famous pin-up girl artist Gil Elvgren:


Now for the Bad Girls...
Dames, Dolls and Delinquents

A google image search shows a never ending stream of lurid cover after titillating cover after tawdry cover, and on and on...

Author Gary Lovisi has a new book out on collecting Pulp novels with Bad Girl covers and original art, with lots of great illustrations, titled DAMES, DOLLS, and DELINQUENTS (available here). Hit that link to check out several pages with the ever-handy ''look inside'' feature.

"... From sexy, semi-dressed pin-up dolls to dangerous bad girls and deadly dames, this book takes you inside the exciting and evocative world of pulp fiction paperbacks. Painted by some of the most talented and collectible artists of the last 50 years this book features some of the pulp fiction paperbacks that set the literary world on its ear.

Always titillating, often tawdry, definitely not politically correct nor for the faint of heart, the nearly 700 full-color pulp fiction paperback images in Dames, Dolls and Delinquents is a visual smorgasbord of sex, sin and sass! ..."

In this dynamic and decadent book you'll find:
  • 700 covers with title, author, cover artist, publisher, book number and date of publication
  • Pricing in three grades of condition for each book
  • Tips on collecting pulp fiction
  • Lists of specialist collectors and shows

You can see more fun pulp pinup items here: Naughty Pulp Fiction Pin Up Girls section.

'Tique Talk is published by msdowantiques.com

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