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Otto Soglow

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Otto Soglow (1900 – 1975)

Soglow, an attendee of the Art Students League in New York City, earned his notoriety as the creator of the popular, syndicated comic strip The Little King. He created single and multi-panel cartoons and found success on June 7th, 1930 when he first published the playful cartoon The Little King  in New Yorker Magazine. Despite focusing on a noble figure, Soglow included a variety of more typical members of society just as he did later while creating propaganda poster images for mass consumption during World War II.  Although he started as an illustrator inspired by the Ashcan School movement’s gritty portrayals of poverty in New York, Soglow moved on to a pen and ink cartooning style that appears in his war poster designs.  During World War II, Soglow continued his work on The Little King while creating propaganda posters, yet he added Ookle the Dictator to The Little King series, thus satirizing the authoritarian actions of Adolph Hitler. Soglow even went so far as to donate four artworks to be sold to benefit the “Museum’s Armed Services Program” created by the Museum of Modern Art, NY, in an attempt to provide facilities and supplies to soldier-artists and art therapy and entertainment to other soldiers. In the private sector and in government propaganda, Soglow supported American war efforts.