"He reserved some of his most repellent effects for images of women. Like so much of American culture in the ’50s, when a new feminist consciousness was just beginning to coalesce, his work comes across as spectacularly misogynistic. That he turns men into freaks too doesn’t really alter the impression that Wolverton’s art is a for-boys-only art."
And a certain "Protestant sect" gets a mention:
"In 1941 he had become a member of a Protestant sect called the Radio Church of God, later the Worldwide Church of God. He was ordained as an elder in 1943, and as his contribution to the sect he illustrated some of its apocalyptically minded publications, as well as the biblical account of the earth’s final days.
"Several of his end-of-the-world pictures are in the show, and they’re wild. Plagues descend on the sin-ridden human race. Bodies break out in disfiguring boils. Faces burn, shrivel and stretch into masks of fear... In those profoundly and ingeniously disintegrative images, everything inside the body — viscera, muscles, mucus, bones, brains — moves to the outside. Heads multiply; tongues turn into noses; hands become feet. Figures become dripping, leaking containers of crude matter, like the figures of sinners and saints in Michelangelo’s “Last Judgment,” who scowl and weep and pout as they float above the pit."
If you're in the Big Apple you can view the masterpieces for yourself through Aug. 14 at the Barbara Gladstone Gallery, 515 West 24th Street, Chelsea. Click over and read the full review. Be sure to view the slideshow while you're there.