The Poster Museum recommends Italian Futurism 1909-1944: Reconstructing the Universe on now until September 1st at The Guggenheim, NYC.
Futurism was an artistic and social movement that originated in the early 20th Century. The artworks created under Futurism predominately portray the symbols of modernity - speed, bustling big cities and the acceleration of industry - it was a movement committed to the possibility of the future. To be a Futurist meant to subscribe to a philosophy that drew on stereotypically masculine traits, such as stoicism, strength and assertion. Although the movement was criticized for being misogynous and anti-women, it was not quite that at all as there happened to be many female Futurists. Rather, Futurism was against qualities attributed to the idea of femininity, as in nature and harmony. It also rebelled against good-taste and was fundamentally anti-nostalgia. The goal of Futurism was not to draw on aspects of history but to reconstruct a brand new world and therefore a brand new art form that put at its centre the project of war and speed.
The creator of this poster, Marcello Nizzoli (1887 - 1969) was devoted to the goals and philosophies of Futurism. It is one of my favorite posters in the collection at The Poster Museum precisely for the part it plays in the history of Italian Futurism. Nizolli was an artist as well as an industrial and graphic designer who was particularly influenced by the Italian Futurist, Fortunato Depero, who designed the 1932 Campari Soda bottle and created covers for magazines such as Vogue and The New Yorker. This poster, made by Nizolli, for Campari cordial is a wonderful example of Italian still-life painting in art deco style. Each element is perfectly composed, the Campari bottle appearing larger than life in relation to the surrounding objects.
On the 45th anniversary of the Apollo moon landing we have carefully selected some of our best posters that reveal the mystery, wonder and reverie our great luna has inspired over the last century and longer.
George Melies Trip to the Moon is considered to be the first film every made in the science fiction genre. Shot in1902, the French silent film follows a group of astronomers into outer space who crash land their capsule in the moon’s eye. The film is UNESCO world heritage listed, a masterpiece of its time and one of my personal favorites. This film poster is dated from the year of the films release and would have been viewed on a Mutoscope, an early motion picture device that is coin operated and viewed by a single person - much like an arcade slot-machine or peep-show.
Moonraker is the 11th film in the James Bond series. It stars Roger Moore and is directed by Lewis Gilbert. In the poster Bond wears a spacesuit and holds a space gun, his dinner jacket can be viewed just beneath the collar. The poster is illustrated by Dan Gouzee, who designed a number of posters for Moonraker with each focusing on a particular Bondian element, such as the action, the Bond girls and the futuristic set. The film and poster were released in 1979.
Stasys Eidrigevičius is a famous Lithuanian graphic artist and painter. He created this poster for the Pan Twardowski Ballet. Based on the story of the sorcerer, Pan Twardowski, who entered a pact with the devil and fell on the moon on his way to hell. Polish folklore depicts Pan Twardowski forever standing on the moon.
Felini’s 1990 film The Voice of the Moon tells a mad and mysterious tale about a recently discharged mental patient, Ivo Salvini, who hears voices in a well - voices that often quote lunar-obsessed nineteenth century Italian poet Giacomo Leopardi.
To the Moon
By Giacomo Leopardi
I remember, gracious, graceful moon
When just a year ago, upon the hill
I came, filled with pain, to gaze at you
And you were hanging then above that woods
As you are now, and brightening everything.
Your face, however, then looked dim and trembling
To me, because I saw it through the tears
Rising to my eyes, my life was so
Unhappy, and still is, and doesn’t change
O my beloved moon. And yet it pleases me
This memory, and to feel again the time
Of my unhappiness. How good it is
In youthful years, when hope is still far-reaching
And memory does not go back so far
To go back to past things, even when those things
Are sad, and when the sadness has not ended!
New York based outsider artist, Ionel Talpazan, paints pseudo-scientific diagrams of elaborate spaceship innards that often include complex technical renderings and handwritten commentary. The painting is unique in this series because of its opacity and etherial quality. The moon-like silvery hue of the ufo appears to be speeding through space leaving a plumage of space dust in its midst. One imagines that the ship is only made visible to us by the gleaming light of our moon.
This poster was part of an advertising campaign presented by Apple in 1997. The series was for a print advertising strategy that focused on brand image rather than a specific product. It featured one historic figure with the apple logo and the slogan “Think different” in one corner with no reference to the company’s products. Some of the famous portraits include Neil Armstrong, Jim Henson, Maria Callas and Miles Davis.
15 Great posters about bicycles to honor the Tour de France
The maquette is the original artwork for a poster and particularly wonderful for showing the details left by the artists hand, such as the application of paint and ink, as this usually disappears in the final print. The following maquettes are made by prolific artist Raoul Eric Castel, aka ERIC (1915 - 1997). Castel began his career as a poster artist during World War Two and later in the 1950’s and 60’s was especially associated with Emprunt Acier and Philips.
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3 unique Easy Rider original film posters.
“A man went looking for America and couldn’t find it anywhere.”
One of the greatest blondes, Barbarella.
All chocolatey posters available at The Poster Museum: 122 Chambers st, New York, NY
In 1946 the modern Bikini was created by the French engineer Louis Reard to a world that was not quite ready for something so revealing. The bikini was declared illegal by western countries, while the Vatican and other religious groups found it sinful. Later on, the bikini was made popular by actors like Bridget Bardot and Ursula Andress, becoming mainstream by the 1960’s.
This pin-up poster depicts a woman in a blue bikini sitting on the beach next to a sombrero turning to face her audience. She is painted in soft hues with delicately applied water-color. It is a curious poster as there is no correlation whatsoever between the product it advertises, Veedol Motor Oil, and the image it is selling, a woman in a bikini. But of course, today we see this type of advertising regularly, where a product is indirectly depicted through some vague or often overt fantasy. We see this approach often in fashion and perfume posters that show scantily clad men and women. These images are sometimes criticized for their manipulative qualities, toying with viewers emotional desires or insecurities in order to sell the product. On the other side of the spectrum we saw in 2007 Turkey banning all posters depicting women in two-piece swimsuits in an attempt to appease Islamic-oriented authorities. What a huge step backwards for the emancipation of women in the middle-east. Today, on the anniversary of the bikini, I wonder more about the history of the poster and the lasting effect an image has on its audience.
According to French historian Max Gallo, “for over two hundred years, posters have been displayed in public places all over the world. Visually striking, they have been designed to attract the attention of passers-by, making us aware of a political viewpoint, enticing us to attend specific events, or encouraging us to purchase a particular product or service.” The modern poster, as we know it, however, dates back to 1870 when the printing industry perfected color lithography and made mass production possible. “In little more than a hundred years,” writes poster expert John Barnicoat, “it has come to be recognized as a vital art form, attracting artists at every level, from painters to theatrical and commercial designers. Credit: Wikipedia
I wonder how many bikinis you’ll see on your way to work today?!
15 all american posters for the 4th of July
The Groiler Club is commemorating the 75th anniversary of the outbreak of World War II with an exhibition titled The Power of Words and Images in a World at War. On view until August 2nd is a carefully curated selection of powerful and dramatic WWII ephemera, including original posters, propaganda leaflets, telegrams, maps, letters and periodicals. The exhibit highlights the importance of such artifacts for modern audiences as it reflects the reality of a world at war and the effect it had on so many lives.
One series of original posters included in the exhibition made particular impact - Norman Rockwell’s sentimental propaganda imagery depicting the Four Freedoms.
This week we uncovered an exciting document out of our collection which would make a nice addition to the exhibition at The Grolier Club. It is this original and complete New York World-Telegram from December 10th, 1941. With headlines like, “Japs Invade Luzon” and “U.S. Smashes Another Attempt” and other imagery such as Rockwell’s posters we are able to experience the reality of what people saw and were engaged in at the time.
The Power of Words and Images in a World at War The Grolier Club 47 East 60th St, New York 10022
The original Rockwell Four Freedom series is also available at The Poster Museum.
The celebration of World UFO day on the 2nd of July is made in honor of of what is known as the Roswell UFO incident of 1947. The day is celebrated to raise awareness on the undoubted existence of UFO’s and to encourage governments to declassify their files on UFO sightings. On UFO day it is customary to gather with friends and watch the skies for unidentified flying objects.
On a day such as today who better to write about than possibly one of the worlds most devoted UFO believers - New York based outsider artist, Ionel Talpazan.
Ionel’s story is as strange and compelling as it is tragic and mysterious. Born into a poor family in Romania, who at a very young age sold him into a farming family. It was in the Romanian countryside, during these impressionable years that Ionel experienced his first extraterrestrial encounter that come to color the world and the rest of his life. Ionel pursued art as a way to conceptualize his unique experiences which he captures in a bold and vibrant palette.
The paintings below are large scale renditions of spaceships whose transparent exoskeleton reveal the objects complex inner workings. Accompanying Ionel’s spaceships is a string of cursive handwritten text. The didactic and pseudoscientific text aids the diagramatic drawings and also contributes to the work in a wonderfully decorative way.
Later, Ionel was fortunate to find an American sponsor in New York City where he continues to reside today, and now finally with US citizenship. On his business card Ionel describes himself as a visionary artist, and indeed he is. His approach can be compared to Leonardo da Vinci who made art an investigation into all things, that was not devoted entirely to the beautiful or sublime but also invention, science and technology. As an outsider artist, who is not academically trained Ionel’s artistic approach is open, flexible and absent of pretense and hierarchies. He sees the artist as an astronaut who must traverse the world for ideas.
Ionel treated his US citizenship on June 27th with joy and symbology. For Ionel the day was seen as a complete rebirthing that he honored with a new fitting name, Adrian da Vinci.
This is just a small selection of works by Ionel Talpazan in Philip’s collection - if you are interested in seeing more contact Philip Williams at firstname.lastname@example.org
Happy World UFO Day from The Poster Museum!
Lady Di spoof for Penthouse Magazine circa 1980. Artist: Ori Hofmekler, 29.5 x 47 inches
A salute to our neighbors with 7 vintage posters depicting the magical Canadian landscape.