Signed at lower left by the late artist, illustrator, satirist, humorist, CHARLES BRAGG (1931-2017), is this pencil drawing of a man with a hammer's handle in his mouth (!!). The 4 3/4" by 7 1/2" work (framed in a sort of shadowbox, 13 1/2" by 17 1/2") is not dated but could well be as old as the late 1960's or early 1970's. Bragg of course is the well-known, prolific artist best known via his hilarious prints. He was a commentator on the human condition, human frailties, and 20th century life. An interesting obituary by friend Morris Shapiro says that Bragg's work "resides within a long narrative tradition that begins with Hieronymus Bosch and Pieter Bruegel, and extends through Francisco Goya, William Hogarth, Honoré Daumier, into Al Hirschfeld and Ralph Steadman." Born in St. Louis, he spent time as a youth in New York, going through a variety of careers including truck driver and stand-up comic, before settling in California. He submitted sketches to Playboy magazine and became known for the humor they portrayed. A PBS 1986 documentary rocketed him to notoriety, and the 1980's and 1990's were a period of great success. Living in Beverly Hills, he worked until the end of his life. Bragg's prints are commonly found around the country but original works remain fairly scarce. His son Chick is also a talented artist in his own right. Drawing itself is in excellent condition, the background matting has water staining and should be replaced, or, you may want to re-think the entire present shadowbox style framing in favor of a more traditional frame and mat.
CHARLES BRAGG (1931-2017) original pencil drawing of man with hammer by famous satirist illustrator