This stunning poster, a classic of the International Typographic, or Swiss Style, was selected as a Swiss Poster of the Year award winner in 1963. Strongly relying on typographic elements, the “Swiss Style” was refined in the ’50s and ’60s at two design schools, one in Basel led by Armin Hofmann and the other in Zurich under Josef Muller-Brockmann. Both had studied at the Zurich School of Design before WWII, where they absorbed the modernist principles of the Bauhaus and Jan Tschichold’s New Typography.
Hofmann’s posters express a graphic purity rarely seen in any medium. Restricting his palette to primarily black and white (and sometimes a third color), Hofmann used a mathematical grid to provide a unified and orderly structure. Hand illustration disappeared, replaced by black and white studio photography, while traditional typefaces were replaced by clean and straightforward sans serif styles. His poster for the opera William Tell is remarkable for its modern yet tension filled treatment that uses type to portray the arrow that whizzes toward the precariously balanced apple.
While collected by art and design museums throughout the world, Hofmann’s posters remain surprisingly affordable – with prices starting at just a few hundred dollars. To view the Gallery’s extensive collection of his work, click here.
Despite the looming tensions of the Cold War, a sense of peace and prosperity settled throughout much of the world at the end of World War II. Populations rose dramatically, and technological advances such as the arrival of television and the commercial jetliner helped make the world seem like a much smaller place. Global Persuasion explores the veritable “poster boom” of the post-war years, and the distinct consumer and corporate advertising styles it propelled. An interesting blend of whimsy and optimism coupled with vigilance and Atomic Age anxiety, The Mid-Century Modern poster genre represented a monumental shake-up in the field of graphic design and has seen a meteoric rise in popularity in recent years.
We are proud to present Postermania!: Handpicked Summer Favorites, a show and sale of original vintage posters chosen by the gallery’s knowledgeable staff. The term “Postermania” was originally coined during the Belle Epoque and refers to the poster fever that swept Paris during the 1890s. Fittingly, the gallery’s 19th annual summer exhibition features a diverse selection of posters by subject, genre and period, each selected by IPG staff members to reflect their individual tastes.
Read more here, and we’ve love to hear about your favorites in the comments section below!
The IPG staff is busy preparing the gallery for tonight’s Titans of the Sea opening reception and we’re just about ready to unveil this unprecedented collection of ocean liner posters! We’re thrilled to compliment the collection with several artifacts from Boston’s Lannan Ship Model Gallery. The docking telegraph pictured here has a temporary home in our front room near Cassandre’s iconic Normandie. The dramatic piece is from the Matson Line’s SS Mariposa, which was launched in 1931. We’re also excited to be showcasing a model of the Cunard Line’s RMS Caronia amongst other nautical antiques, all of which are for sale at IPG throughout the duration of the exhibit.