Tag Archive | socialism

In The Spotlight: Graphic Design & Poster Art Reference Books

via our AntikbarBooks page on Facebook:

A selection of reference books and catalogues on early poster art, advertising and graphic design during the late 19th and early 20th century featuring a variety of art movements and styles including Photomontage, Soviet Constructivism, Art Deco, Realism, Avant Garde, Industrial, Art Nouveau, Modernism, Psychedelic, and product advertising and exhibition artwork. Click on the image links below for more information:

Abram Games Graphic Designer 2003 Stenberg Brothers Exhibition Catalogue 2015
The Complete Masters of the Poster 1990 The Art of the Fillmore 1966-1971 1997
Trade Advertising and Packaging in Russia 19-20 century 1993 See USSR Intourist Posters And The Marketing Of The Soviet Union 2013
The Queen Mary a Book of Comparisons 1936
Soviet Graphic Arts 1963 Almanach der Allrussischen Ausstellung für Landwirtschaft und Heimindustrie 1923
Russian Graphic Design 1880-1917 1997 Salon International Du Livre D'Art International Art Book Fair 1931
Collection of Hungarian Poster Reproductions 1959 Gypromez Bulletin Bulleten Gypromeza 1929
Railroads Eisenbahnen 1952
Lenin and Leninism 1928The Power of the Poster 1998
Russian Constructivism Exhibition Laboratory Period 1975 Koretsky The Soviet Photo Posters 1930-1984 2012
Samples of Graphic Design 2005
Film Posters of the Russian Avant-Garde 1995 For more updates, follow @AntikBarBooks on Facebook at: www.facebook.com/AntikBarBooks

AntikBar Books focuses on book design and related ephemera from the 1920s and 1930s covering the major art movements including Bauhaus, Constructivism, Art Deco and Modernism, many featuring photographs and artwork by notable artists of the period. Items include antique and vintage theatre brochures, travel books, reference magazines and other publications. 

[Note: this website is currently a work in progress with more items being uploaded every week. The prices and details will be completed soon on any items listed at £999. If you would like more information on any item, or if you would like to visit us to view any item, please contact us in advance via www.antikbarbooks.co.uk/contact-us]

Address: AntikBar, 404 King’s Road, Chelsea, London SW10 0LJ
Telephone: +44 (0) 207 352 9309
Email: info@antikbar.co.uk

Antikbar Books: www.antikbarbooks.co.uk
AntikBar Original Vintage Posters: www.antikbar.co.uk

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AntikBar is a Member of the International Vintage Poster Dealers’ Association (IVPDA), UK Posters Network, London Art Deco Society, King’s Road Curve and The Association of Art and Antiques Dealers (LAPADA).
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AntikBar Newsletter: Spring 2020

Don’t miss our vintage poster auction on 25 April
+ NEW book site launch + COVID-19 update

We hope you and your loved ones are well and keeping healthy.

In line with the health advice to help fight the coronavirus, our gallery at 404 King’s Road is temporarily closed until further notice, but we are still accepting and shipping orders made online (we provide worldwide delivery). Please visit AntikBar.co.uk to view our original vintage posters — including our 130+ latest additions.

We will fulfil all online orders and restoration services as soon as possible. As a small business, we thank you for your understanding during this uncertain time and appreciate your continued support.

Please contact us by email if you have any queries or would like any more information: info@antikbar.co.uk


Saturday 25 April: Original Vintage Posters Spring Sale

This auction will feature a wide variety of over 400 original vintage posters from around the world including travel, sport, advertising, war, propaganda and movie posters.

Our auction catalogue is due to be completed over the next few days but, in the meantime, you can view our current lots and register in advance to bid via:

LiveAuctioneershttps://www.liveauctioneers.com/catalog/165115_original-vintage-poster-spring-sale/ 
The Saleroomhttps://www.the-saleroom.com/en-gb/auction-catalogues/antikbar/catalogue-id-antikb10018
Invaluablehttps://www.invaluable.com/catalog/pbrxy9iqrv

As with all our live online auctions over the last few years, the auction will start at 3pm (UK time), and our lots are listed with no reserve prices. There will be no preview before this auction due to the temporary closure of our gallery.

For more information, please visit www.antikbar.co.uk/antikbar-auctions/ or contact us by email.

Our popular ‘Lot of the Day’ features will be posted at the end of this page and on our website and social media (links given below) nearer the time, in the lead up to the auction.



NEW!   
We’re delighted announce the launch of our book website — www.AntikbarBooks.co.uk — created for our vast collection of antique and vintage theatre brochures, travel books, reference magazines, and other publications.

AntikBar Books focuses on book design and related ephemera from the 1920s and 1930s covering the major art movements including Bauhaus, Constructivism, Art Deco and Modernism. Many of the publications feature photography and artwork by notable artists and designers of the period.

This new website is currently a work in progress with over 1,200 active listings, and more items being added regularly. [Note: Please contact us for information on items marked at £999, which are due to be completed soon with prices and details.]

We invite you to follow @AntikBarBooks on Facebook to browse our photo albums featuring some of our recent additions and other highlighted selections.



AntikBar – Original Vintage Posters
404 King’s Road, Chelsea, London SW10 0LJ
W: www.AntikBar.co.uk   E: info@antikbar.co.uk 


Sign up for our newsletter via AntikBar.co.uk or AntikbarBooks.co.uk and follow us on social media for more images, news, features and updates:

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/AntikBar
Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/AntikBar
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/AntikBar.co.uk
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/antikbar.co.uk/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AntikBarBooks/
WordPress: https://antikbarposters.wordpress.com/

AntikBar is a Member of the International Vintage Poster Dealers’ Association (IVPDA), UK Posters Network, London Art Deco Society, King’s Road Curve and The Association of Art and Antiques Dealers (LAPADA).



 

BannerApril2020

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After Sale – Timed Auction:

AntikBar Spring Sale Vintage Poster Auction After Sale Timed April May 2020
Last chance to bid on the remaining 51 lots from our Spring Sale auction on 25 April. Click here to register and bid in this timed sale (ends Monday 11 May at 12pm UK time).

Timed Auction #LotOfTheDay

1 ArtNouveauTextiles   2 SouthAfricaBeach   
3 TourDeFrance 
4 TreasureIsland  5 NormandyMarine
6 GlacierNationalPark
7 Madonna  8 UEFAFootball96
9 WWIArtillery
10 RockConcertAvalon  11 FartCushion
12 AirFranceLiberte  
After Sale *ENDS TODAY* Monday 11 May at 12pm (UK time) — Final chance to bid on the 51 remaining auction lots in our timed sale: www.invaluable.com/catalog/zf2p135c95

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Lot of the Day
features in the lead up to our auction on 25 April:

1 Psychedelic Rock Buffalo Springfield Avalon 1966 AntikBar Vintage Posters Auction 25April2020  2 Marlene Dietrich Horst P Horst Fashion Photo AntikBar Vintage Posters Auction 25April2020
3 James Dean Rebel Without A Cause AntikBar Vintage Posters Auction 25April2020
4 Mickey Mouse Walt Disney AntikBar Vintage Posters Auction 25April2020  5 Football World Cup 1982 AntikBar Vintage Posters Auction 25April2020
6 Picasso Exhibition AntikBar Vintage Posters Auction 25April2020  7 Berlin Film Festival 1962 AntikBar Vintage Posters Auction 25April2020
8 Marx Lenin Soviet USSR AntikBar Vintage Posters Auction 25April2020
9 L'Instant Taittinger Champagne Grace Kelly Design AntikBar Vintage Posters Auction 25April2020  10 Austria Ski Snowman AntikBar Vintage Posters Auction 25April2020
11 Porsche 911 Excitement AntikBar Vintage Posters Auction 25April2020
12 Occupation Map Post WWII AntikBar Vintage Posters Auction 25April2020 13 Queen Elizabeth II AntikBar Vintage Posters Auction 25April2020
14 Polar Cerveza Cuba Havana AntikBar Vintage Posters Auction 25April2020
15 Keith Haring AntikBar Vintage Posters Auction 25April2020  16 Ghent Flowers 1913 AntikBar Vintage Posters Auction 25April2020
13 La Dolce Vita AntikBar Vintage Posters Auction 25April2020  17 Fougasse Careless Talk WWII AntikBar Vintage Posters Auction 25April2020
Auction TODAY 25April2020 AntikBar Original Vintage Posters


In The News
:

ATG AntikBar Poster Auction 25April  AntikBar auction featured by the Antiques Trade Gazette (issue 2438): This original poster for The Greatest Show on Earth – Barnum & Bailey’s Ringling Circus is estimated at £150-300 in the Antikbar auction on April 25.”

 

Burma Campaign WWII Myanmar AntikBar Poster Auction 25 April 2020  Coming up in our Original Vintage Poster Auction on Saturday 25 April: a collection of World War Two Burma Campaign posters

Air France Travel Posters Roger Bezombes AntikBar Vintage Poster Auction 25 April  Coming up in our Original Vintage Poster Auction on Saturday 25 April: a collection of Air France travel posters by Roger Bezombes 

 

 

 

 

In The Spotlight: Cultural Revolution Propaganda Posters

PP1063_1_m

Unite For Victory (1971)

The Great Proletariat Cultural Revolution in China (1966-1976) was launched by the founding father of the Chinese Communist Party, Chairman Mao (Mao Zedong; 1893-1976), following the political and economic failure of his Great Leap Forward campaign (1958-1962).

Dynamic propaganda posters were produced to reach the masses, often featuring images of the leader with workers, soldiers, large red flags and slogans in bold red text.

Below are a few of our original vintage posters from the period (click on the images for more information):

PP0598_1_m  PP0602_1_m 
Charge Courageously (1965)   Wipe Out The Enemy (1965)

PP0603_1_m  PP0601_1_m 
PLA: Be A Fierce Tiger On Land, Flood Dragon On Water (1965)

PP0668_1_m  PP0472_1_m 
Unite Against US Aggression (1970) People’s Militia Victory (1970)

PP0509_1_m  PP0703_1_m 
Landscape Surveyors (1972)   Young Athletes (1970s) 

PP0508_1_m  PP0637_1_m 
Rigorous Military Training (1972)   The Road Of Dazhai (1965)

PP0550_1_m  PP0610_1_m 
New Strides In Agriculture (1977)  Sino-Soviet Border Conflict (1970)

Visit our website at www.AntikBar.co.uk for more original vintage Chinese propaganda posters and to browse our variety of other posters from around the world (travel, sport, propaganda, war, advertising and movie posters), available online with worldwide delivery and at our gallery:

AntikBar – Original Vintage Posters
404 King’s Road, London SW10 0LJ

PA1690_1_mFor more News & Events, images and updates, follow us on:

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/AntikBar
Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/AntikBar
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/AntikBar.co.uk
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/antikbar.co.uk/
WordPress: https://antikbarposters.wordpress.com/   

AntikBar is a Member of the International Vintage Poster Dealers’ Association (IVPDA), UK Posters Network, London Art Deco Society, King’s Road Curve and The Association of Art and Antiques Dealers (LAPADA).

 

Don’t miss AntikBar’s next Poster Auction on 11 May!

Set of 3 Posters Lenin USSR Propaganda Constructivism Original Vintage Posters Auction including USSR and Palestine Propaganda Poster Collection 

Our next auction on Saturday 11 May of over 500 original vintage posters features a collection of Soviet and Palestinian propaganda posters as well as a wide variety of original vintage travel, cinema, sport, advertising, war and propaganda posters from around the world.

The auction preview will be open at our gallery from Wednesday 8 May to 1pm on Saturday 11 May and the auction will start online at 3pm (UK time) on Saturday 11 May. View our catalogue and register to bid in advance via:

The Saleroom — www.the-saleroom.com/en-gb/auction-catalogues/antikbar/catalogue-id-antikb10014
Invaluable — www.invaluable.com/catalog/67cmv11cug
Live Auctioneers — www.liveauctioneers.com/catalog/139883_original-posters-ussr-and-palestine-propaganda

→ This extraordinary collection of Soviet and Palestine posters was acquired by our seller during his trips to the USSR and Lebanon in the 1960s and 1970s. 

In March 1969, the seller joined a UK delegation of the National Union of Students on a visit to the USSR. During his stay in Moscow, Leningrad and Tallinn, he acquired some of the posters. Later that year, he wrote to the Soviet authorities who sent several parcels of posters to him at university. 

The Palestinian posters were obtained in Summer 1971 when the seller travelled to the Middle East to apply for a postgraduate course at the American University in Beirut. On arrival he realised the university was not fully functioning due to the unstable and rapidly deteriorating political and military situation. He stayed in Beirut for two months then visited Syria, Jordan and Israel, returning home via Beirut. At the time, he considered becoming a journalist so arranged an interview with Bassam Abu Sharif, the spokesperson for the PFLP (Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine). During this meeting he was given many of the posters that form this collection. The new symbol of the PFLP was adopted in May 1969 and these posters are among the earliest published by the Palestinian resistance.

Auction Preview now open at our gallery until 1pm on Saturday:
AntikBar Poster Auction Preview photos1 – video clips and more images available on our social media (links given below).

Lot of the Day (scroll down to follow us also on social media for more image features in the lead up to this auction)

1 BeatCompetition2 a PopularFront LiberationPalestine
3 a GeneralMotors ConceptCar Chrysler
4 a GaleriesLafayette Children5 a BillGraham RockMusic SanFrancisco
6 a CigarettesSaphir ArtNouveau7 a Lot PolishAirline Dog
8 a OriginalSin Cider MsVeronique9 a Solidarity
10 a Guinness Fireman
11 a TierparkBerlin Zoo Elephants12 a MonteCarlo DivingGirl
13 a GoodCitizens AbrahamLincoln14 a DavidBowie LetsDance
15 a TheOtherWoman 16 a Fougasse CarelessTalk WWII
17 a Soviet USSR Construction Propaganda Poster AntikBar Auction 
**AUCTION TODAY!**

In The News:

ATG Preview Issue 2390 AntikBar Poster Auction 11 May 2019 Our upcoming auction featured by the Antiques Trade Gazette on their Previews page (p.32)   

Visit our website Auction Page and follow us on social media for more auction images and updates:

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/AntikBar
Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/AntikBar
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/AntikBar.co.uk
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/antikbar.co.uk/
WordPress: https://antikbarposters.wordpress.com/   

All our original vintage posters from around the world (propaganda, war, sport, travel, advertising and movie posters) are available online with worldwide delivery at www.AntikBar.co.uk and at our gallery at:

AntikBar – Original Vintage Posters
404 King’s Road, London SW10 0LJ

AntikBar is a Member of the International Vintage Poster Dealers’ Association (IVPDA), UK Posters Network, London Art Deco Society, King’s Road Curve and The Association of Art and Antiques Dealers (LAPADA).

100 Year Anniversary of the 1917 October Revolution in Posters

PC0197_1_mThe twentieth century was shaped by several key global events. One of them – the 1917 October Revolution in Russia – led to the creation of a completely new social structure, government and system of beliefs. The events of the Russian Revolution have been described in many books and portrayed in films but very few documents that bear true witness to this era have managed to carry through the essence of the dramatic changes and immense struggle between the old and the new to today. Posters are one of the few documents that have survived as silent visual yet very vocal witnesses to the events that tore the country in half and led to the formation of the USSR (the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics also known as the Soviet Union – Союз Советских Социалистических Республик or СССР). Historic memorabilia from that time is very rare as paper was scarce and, as such, these original posters from the period are highly collectable.

After the October Revolution in 1917, the Bolshevik government was faced with the task of swaying a largely illiterate population to its side in the resulting Russian Civil War and beyond. Posters proved to be an ideal medium to deliver their message using bold and striking designs with minimum text. The imagery clearly distinguished the ‘bad guys’ from the ‘good guys’ and instructed the people on what to do and how to fight the enemy. As the country established itself, poster art grew more sophisticated and the government further developed this means of propaganda art and the print runs increased. Due to this proven effectiveness, the Soviet Union became one of the few countries where artists PP0399_1_mwere specifically trained as poster designers.

The unique combination of striking artwork, powerful imagery and important social history makes these posters of great interest to collectors. A growth in nostalgia and reconciliation with the country’s past is resulting in more demand for high-end posters from the Soviet Union’s early 1917-1939 period as well as the more affordable period from the 1960s to the collapse of the Soviet Union in the early 1990s.

A few of our original vintage Soviet posters will be displayed in our gallery from 25 October to 7 November for this centenary and all are available to view online at www.AntikBar.co.uk and at our gallery on request. Click on the images featured below for more information on this slideshow selection:

PP0044_1_m
3rd anniversary of the Vseobuch Red Army military training for conscripts (1921)

PC0197_1_m
October – Ten Days That Shook The World movie poster for the groundbreaking silent film by Sergei Eisenstein (Y. Ruklevsky, 1927)

PP0024_1_m
Mikhail Frunze (1885-1925): Bolshevik leader during the 1917 Revolution and Red Army commander during the Russian Civil War (1920s) 

PP0758_1_m
Shock brigade of the world’s proletariat Proletarians of all countries, defend (G. Klutsis, 1930s)

PP0591_1_m
Progress of collectivisation in Uzbekistan (Z. Ratem, 1931)

PP0666_1_m
Let’s build a powerful Soviet airship “Klim Voroshilov” (A. Deineka, 1931)

PP0035_1_m
Five year plan (Abramovich, 1932)

PP0017_1_m
“There is nothing that the Bolsheviks can’t conquer” Stalin (P. Karachentsov, 1937)

PP0204_1_m
Constitution of the USSR (El Lissitsky, 1937)

PP0062_1_m
All Soviet people will vote for further strengthening of our glorious Red Army and Navy! (V. Stenberg, 1938)

PC0664_1_m
They Wanted Peace / The Great Dawn movie poster (P. Finogin, 1938)

PC0278_1_m
Movie poster for a film about Valery Chkalov (1904-1938): awarded hero pilot of the Soviet Union (1941)

PP0726_1_m
Long live the XXVI anniversary of the Great October Socialist Revolution! We will win (M.A. Gordon, E.P. Efimov, 1943)

PP0574_1_m
Collective farmers of Siberia! More bread to the Soviet country! (V. Klimashin, 1946)

PP0368_1_m
Increase steel production to make our country stronger! 25.4 million tonnes of steel in 1950 (V. Klimashin, 1946)

PS0473_1_m
Soviet warrior, be an excellent skier! (E. Maloletkov, 1953)

PP0331_1_m
Sport in the USSR – Sport of millions! (I. Toidze, 1956)

PP0710_1_m
Communists always ahead! (1956)

PP0200_1_m
Live, work and fight like Lenin! (V. Suryaninov, 1958)

PP0670_1_m
“…Everywhere and in everything the name of Lenin is with us…” V. Mayakovsky (I. Ippolitov, 1959)

PP0617_1_m
Pravda “Lenin is with us, eternal and majestic, his thoughts, words and deeds spread through the galaxy” V. Mayakovsky (N. Dolgorukov, 1960s) 

PP0516_1_m
Printer’s proof for Pravda (V. Klimashin, 1960)

PP0399_1_m
Glory to the Great October! (A. Antonchenko, 1960)

PS0559_1_m
Every new record – new glory for our motherland! (D. Pyatkin, M. Strezhenov, 1960)

PP0705_1_m
People and party are united! (V. Ivanov, 1961)

PP0641_1_m
Forward with the party of Lenin! (K. Ivanov, 1961)

PP0540_1_m
The people and the army are united! (L. Golovanov, 1961)

PP0627_1_m
With the name of Lenin! (I. Solovyov, 1962)

PP0556_1_m
Glory to the USSR! (M. Solovyov, 1964)

PP0539_1_m
We are first in space Let’s be first in the chemical industry!  (V. Koretsky, 1964)

PP0524_1_m
Long live the socialist revolution! (B. Kalensky, 1966)

PP0577_1_m
Time works for communism 1917-1967 (L. Levshunova, 1967)

PS0707_1_m
The sport and youth of the country are uniquely united! (R. Suryaninov, 1968)

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Riders Of The Revolution movie poster (A. Lemeshchenko, 1968)

PP0565_1_m
The most human person (V. Ivanov, 1969)

PP0532_1_m
“All education should aim to nurture communist morale in the youth” V.I. Lenin (V. Suryaninov, 1969)

PP0474_1_m
Our ideological foundation is Marxism-Leninism Our goal is communism (E. Briskin, 1969)

PP0530_1_m
Victory of communism is unavoidable (I. Kustov, 1971)

PP0531_1_m
Victory of communism is unavoidable (I. Kustov, 1971)

PP0568_1_m
…Revolution has a beginning, but revolution has no end! (V. Koretsky, 1972)

PP0717_1_m
The Warsaw Pact is a dependable shield of socialism (A. Adashev, 1975)

PP0653_1_m
“The teachings of Marx are ever powerful because they are right!” V.I. Lenin (E. Artsunyan, 1976)

PP0715_1_m
To new achievements in the name of victorious communism! (I. Toidze, 1976)

PP0721_1_m
Glory to Soviet science! XXV Congress of the Communist Party of the USSR (V. Viktorov, 1976)

PC0709_1_m
RVS RevVoyenSoviets movie poster (A. Ulymov, 1977)

PP0573_1_m
Steadily increase the efforts in the fight for stable peace! (D. Filatov, 1977)

PP0552_1_m
Our socialist republic of Soviets will stand firm, like the torch of international socialism and as an example in front of the working masses (B. Reshetnikov, 1977)

PP0654_1_m
1918 1978 You were born under a red flag in the troublesome year… (V. Viktorov, 1978)

PP0612_1_m
Personal five year plan to mark the 110th anniversary of Lenin’s birth! (I. Kominarets, 1979)

PP0713_1_m
23 February – Soviet Red Army and Navy day (V. Fekliev, 1984)

PP0632_1_m
The young will carry on the tradition! 50th anniversary of the Stakhanovite movement (Y. Poltoran, 1984)

In addition to over 500 Soviet posters, we also stock a selection of historical newspapers, constructivist magazines and books including:

Lenin's Letter
ROSTA: Lenin’s letter (1919)

CB0005_1_m
Booklet: Proletariat leader of peasants (1925)

BI0011_1_m
Intourist travel brochure: Visit the USSR (1930s)

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Magazine: USSR in Construction (one of a series, 1930)

CM0007_2_m
Magazine: Za Rulem (back cover Stenberg Brothers, 1931)

BA0219_1_m
Pravda newspaper (G. Klutsis, 1933)

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Izvestia newspaper (1937)

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RussianRevolution FeatureWall Exhibition

HistoryOfCommunism  Twitter feature by @HOCommunism

RussianArtCulture Event listed by Russian Art + Culture

LAPADA Soviet Exhibition Event listed by LAPADA 

A few of our Soviet posters on display at Bentley & Skinner‘s “Faberge and the Russian Revolution” exhibition, open 7-11 November:
B&S exhibition

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Visit our website at www.AntikBar.co.uk to view all our original vintage posters from around the world (cinema, travel, advertising, sport, war, propaganda), available online with worldwide delivery, or visit us at our gallery:

AntikBar – Original Vintage Posters
404 King’s Road, London SW10 0LJ

For more News & Events, images and updates, follow us on:

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/AntikBar
Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/AntikBar
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/AntikBar.co.uk
WordPress: https://antikbarposters.wordpress.com/   

AntikBar is a Member of the International Vintage Poster Dealers’ Association (IVPDA), the London Art Deco Society (LADS) and The Association of Art and Antiques Dealers (LAPADA).

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NEW! Intourist Brochures and Luggage Labels

AntikBar has created a new page for Intourist travel brochures and luggage labels. Intourist was created in 1929 as a State Travel monopoly controlling all foreign tourist traffic into the USSR. Their advertising materials were aimed at attracting foreign tourists and designed in the bourgeois Art Deco style to create a glamorous portrayal of the Soviet Union. Virtually unknown in the USSR, Intourist adverts became a calling card of Soviet Russia as they were distributed in tourist offices, embassies, airports, hotels, train carriages and ocean liner cabins all over the world. Bold, bright and highly artistic they were printed with the highest quality materials and aimed at presenting to foreign tourists the joys of travelling in the USSR – first socialist country in the world.

BI0001_1_m    BI0010_1_m

BI0007_1_m    BI0003_2_m

…More will be added soon! In the meantime, you can browse the www.AntikBar.co.uk website for more original vintage Russian/Soviet posters, antique maps, prints and books and follow @AntikBar on Twitter, Pinterest and Facebook for “Poster of the Day” tweets/pins and other updates. Visit the News & Events page for more information.

Posters, Loud and Clear

This article by AntikBar was first featured in the Art, Antiques and Luxury Design Blog:

Philips Autoradio 1950s

POSTERS, LOUD AND CLEAR

My Russian grandmother used to say: You say a word you loose a piece of your mind.  These days we do talk a lot not only by verbal but also by written means. The power of  the word is dwindling and becoming diluted but there used to be a world without the television and social media.  The only way to get a message across was by displaying it on the walls.  The only way of communicating the message to a wide audience at that time was the poster.

Posters used to be quite dull using mostly words, before French artists elevated them to an art form at the end of  the 19th century.  I believe it was initially a way for them to make extra money and then, as the artists got the flavour for this medium, their works became an art in itself.  Posters present the artist with a challenge of distilling an idea, product or message in one striking image that will grab the attention of passers-by.  The artist is  restricted by the size of the poster sheet and can only use a limited amount of words, so the visual has to be strong.  The art of cabaret by Toulouse Lautrec and the elegance of art nouveau by Mucha really drew attention to posters. Collectors and other talented artists followed suit.

SOCIAL HISTORY

As posters developed they absorbed and distilled styles of the era and form a major part of our social history.  Given they were not meant to be kept it is a miracle that any survived at all.  Designed to be plastered on walls and removed or overlayed with another poster, they were often printed on thin paper and easily deteriorated.  The ones that survived are mostly left-over stock from print shops, treasured collections of early enthusiasts or souvenirs from people involved in the trade.

In Great Britain poster art bloomed at a later stage, in part due to snobbism of the art elite and the critics’ belief that it is below the true standards of an artist to be involved in something as vulgar as advertising.  But the new generation of designers led by the Beggarstaff Brothers (William Nicholson and James Pryde), as well as growing popularity of this art form changed this perception and the British poster evolved.  Some of the most iconic designs were created in Britain to advertise the London Underground and educate masses during the WWII.

ICONIC DESIGNS

At the same time the Bolshevist Revolution happened in Russia and a newly born Socialist Government needed to convey its message urgently to a largely illiterate population.  Posters became an ideal medium for communicating to the masses.  It was an exciting time for the artists in Russia – censorship was largely abolished (as long as the Government was  still supported) and the idea of a State built for the people really electrified the creative minds.  A new art movement – constructivism was born with the belief that artistic talent should be only applied to creating useful things – architecture, furniture and, of course, posters. Some of the most striking designs were created during this period. Posters of the most prominent artists from this art school – A. Rodchenko, L. Lissitsky and the Stenberg Brothers fetch high prices when they turn up at auctions.

Speaking of money – where and on what should you focus if you decide to collect or invest in posters?  As with any art, you should buy what you like so you can appreciate the design and reap emotional dividends from the piece of art that you see hanging on your wall every day.  Certain poster themes have been steadily appreciating over the last few years – skiing, for example, especially those promoting the most popular resorts in Switzerland and France; cult films, James Bond and early cinema classics have also been on the rise recently.  Other areas to watch are WWII posters,  and mid-century design pieces.

ROYAL COLLEGE OF ART

royalcollegeart

Sadly the art of the poster is now becoming extinct.  Television and the digital revolution are  largely replacing this media with animated and interactive ads.  There are still a few talented artists around but commissions are sparse and most of them work purely out of love for this media and the subject of their design.  Keep an eye on artists like Craig Drake who designs alternative film posters for classic films and Mark Fairhurst who designs great sport posters.  I hope that art schools will get on the bandwagon and, at the very least, start commissioning posters for their events like this one made for 1928 Exhibition at the Royal College of Art.

 

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