Curt Frankenstein (1920-2009) is another Chicago area artist whose work has a strong following but possibly not as much as it deserves. As a teenager in World War II, he fled from Germany to Shanghai, China, where he began selling his paintings to survive. After eventually moving to Chicago in 1947, he received formal training and began work as an illustrator. That skill is evident in his humorous, highly skilled etchings and prints. He later began to “create imaginative paintings” which could be classified as sur Read more...real. What makes Frankenstein exceptional to me is the extreme diversity of his work. His etchings have a cutting humor, sometimes political in nature, and they are more in the vein of illustration art. Meanwhile, his oil paintings run the gamut of still lifes, surreal landscapes, seascapes, and portraits. I think a great number of artists tend to focus on a narrow range of subjects, while Frankenstein was open to anything – a trait which probably hurts his marketability, since some people view him more as an illustrator than a painter, and vice versa. Still – Frankenstein has a bit of a cult following. I’ve got a few of his pieces, including a fantastic large seascape and a still life – both atypical but evidence of the strong diversity of his work.
Birth of the Organization Men