Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Stevan Dohanos 1948 Red Cross Poster – Part 2

Here’s the rest of the article that appeared in the February 6, 1948 Lorain Journal about Lorain artist Stevan Dohanos and his painting that was used for a Red Cross poster (shown above). In this part of the article we learn about the background of Dohanos and how he became an artist.

Lorain Rooftops Part Of Red Cross Poster (Part 2)

Dohanos, who has gained widespread fame with his Saturday Evening Post covers, was born in Lorain, the son of a steelworker and one of nine children.

He had always liked to draw but his first real glimpse of the artistic world came when he was asked to play the lead in a play for the Hungarian folk theater.

Soon he was “messing around” with paints and allowed to work on the backdrops and scenery. After two years of high school he entered the steel mills here but continued his homework for the International Correspondence school courses in art in which he had enrolled.

These courses led to his only formal study at a Cleveland art school where he spent three terms of evening classes. When 20 years old, he became an apprentice in an advertising studio in Cleveland where he spent six years, learning the business of commercial art in all its phases, lettering, design and layout.

His first recognition as an artist came after he had won first place twice for drawings at the Cleveland Museum of Art and in 1933 he moved to New York to work for the Fawn studios.

His fame as an artist has grown rapidly since that time and he was one of six artists assigned by the government as members of the treasury art project to spend six months in the Virgin Islands, painting what they saw.

On his return to the states, Dohanos’ tropical-style paintings were a great success and it was in 1938 that he began to work for the Saturday Evening Post, illustrating a serial story.

This led to many more story illustrations in other magazines and then he began to narrow his work down to the Saturday Evening Post alone.

Dohanos’ work is done in a rambling home and studio in Westport, Conn., where he lives with his wife, Margit, and two sons, Peter and Paul.

You might remember my 2011 post (which began here) in which I tried to locate the mysterious house in Lorain that Dohanos featured in a painting that ran on the cover of the July 20, 1946 issue of the Saturday Evening Post.

The mystery was later solved in a three-part blog series (which ran here, here and here) in which it was revealed that the house on that cover was the house on First Street in which Dohanos was born. Unfortunately it had been torn down.

Anyway, a close look at the 1948 Red Cross poster – in which Dohanos is said to have included some Lorain rooftops – makes me think he snuck his old homestead into a painting once again.

Take a look at this detail from the Red Cross painting (below).

What do you think?

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