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Victor Arnautoff and the Politics of Art$
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Robert W. Cherny

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780252040788

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.5406/illinois/9780252040788.001.0001

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DETCOM and COMSAB, 1945–1953

DETCOM and COMSAB, 1945–1953

(p.149) 9 DETCOM and COMSAB, 1945–1953
Victor Arnautoff and the Politics of Art

Robert W. Cherny

University of Illinois Press

During the early Cold War, the Arnautoffs attracted more FBI surveillance. Victor was designated as DETCOM (Communist to be detained in case of national emergency) and COMSAB (potential Communist saboteur). With the rise of abstract expressionism, Victor’s social realism became marginalized, but he found a new cultural home in the California Labor School. He strongly defended the work of Anton Refregier at San Francisco’s Rincon Annex postoffice when it came under attack from anti-Communists. The Arnautoffs continued to be active in the Communist party and applied again to emigrate to the Soviet Union but were again denied

Keywords:   anti-Communism, California Labor School, COMSAB, DETCOM, Anton Refregier, Rincon Annex (San Francisco) murals

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