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Charles Addams - Stop Make Forfeit  
Charles Addams
American, 1912–1988
Stop Make Forfeit
Circa 1950s
11.75 x 10.5
Image area very good. The usual publication and handling marks at edges, not matted, not framed.
Ink and wash
Syndicated cartoon for McClure Syndicate
Signed lower right
Provenance Taraba Illustration Art
Tee & Charles Addams Foundation
Perhaps it's one of the biggest "Forfeits” he will ever potentially make. This is a thoughtful and deeply conceptual work by Addams. The "Lonely Witch" has her mouth open, while the cottage door right behind her is open as well. She shoots bedroom eyes to the man. The wife identity is hidden. Addams is suggesting that it’s the Witch’s desire for the man to throw his wife overboard and then join the Witch for some private time. It's a fair sacrifice for passage for a Witch. And in perfect keeping with Addam's sensibility, where life is seen from the point of view of his macabre characters. His carefully crafted composition has the wife right next to a perilous precipice for convenient disposal. A single lane road gives them no options for turning around. The chimney on top of the Witch's cottage is a clearly phallic in shape. There is a direct line of sight from the man's eyes to the Witch to the chimney. A classic reference of intercourse is typically symbolized by a train going into a tunnel. In this case, it's a car going into a covered bridge. The phallic hood ornament points the way. In prudishly conservative 1956 America, sexuality had to be handled in subtle ways. This may be one of the only works by Addams where he deals with sex, even if it's sex with a Witch. Syndicated cartoon for McClure Syndicate Tee and Charles Addams Foundation Taraba Illustration Art Work is unframed
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