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POSTER OF THE MONTH - January 2020

vintage French travel poster La Cote Basque 1957
Bernard Villemot
38 3/4" x 24"
A,L
Though not specifically about Spring, this is a graphic that seems almost to personify the season. In showing off the range of sports and recreational activities to be enjoyed along France's Southern Atlantic shore, it gathers up the tests of skill in a configuration paying homage to more simple gratifications.
The eighteenth hole has been fashioned as a cylindrical (and horse friendly!) mint green valley, the graceful trees of its edges accentuating a drop toward the beach and sea. Little inlets heading toward Spain invite us to meander at will, something easier to do on a fresh Spring day than when the Southern sun is really cooking.


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POSTER OF THE MONTH - February 2020

Original vintage motorcycle poster Gilera 150 1949
Gino Boccasile
20" x 14 1/2"
A-, L
There are many ways to understand this bemusing vintage poster. But, because I've been for many years a big fan of artist, Gino Bocassile, I focus my thoughts to the maestro's wit and sense of drama.
On the face of it, this circus-like apparition seems out of this world. There is, though, a scene in the recent film, A Hidden Life, where the protagonist is blindfolded in the course of a game of blind man's bluff, the point being one of missing true vision. However, could there be, at the heart of this vignette, much good sense?
The caption reads, "with eyes closed shut." Rather than a death-wish, the couple might be pledging that, come what may, their love will continue to flourish. Therewith, also, the peppy vehicle becomes branded as a means to a new renaissance, receiving an uncanny change.
The works of Boccasile brim with gusto and cheer--a pact with nature to give thanks!


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POSTER OF THE MONTH - March 2020

vintage French entertainment poster Gravures 1937
Marie Laurencin
19 3/8" x 12 3/4"
A, L
The artist of our Poster of the Month, namely, Marie Laurencin, began her art work as a painter of porcelain. Though she moved on to a versatile and daunting career, the low-key, pastel practise seen here, more or less defined her efforts. Skirting big-hitters, like Picasso and other Cubists, she would stick to her guns as an avatar of quietly fertile, chromatic mood.
The vintage poster we are so happy to have and share with you, involves a series etchings she was selling in 1937, in Paris. By way of a great tour de force, the lithographic promotion here, both presents and conceals the products. Three women, seen to be concerned with a sort of seance, happy to be exclusively part of a female circle, appear to be aesthetes only secondarily. But on the other hand, the text of the vintage poster declares, "most accessible," "most varied," opening our eyes to figures of painted sheets and v-form display-racks, inherent in the dresses and the curtains.
Surely one of the most subtle selling points in vintage poster history, Laurencin dares to pose an initiation for those approaching her breathtaking gems.


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POSTER OF THE MONTH - April 2020

vintage French  poster Appel des Nations Unies 1948
Michel Hove
46" X 31"
A, P
Plagues of various kinds have wreaked havoc through the years. In the medieval era, whole settlements became graveyards. In more recent times, however, those experiencing such upheavals have joined together to ensure that, when poison took over, it was met with resistance.
Our Poster of the Month for April (when this April finds itself between a rock and a hard place) brings to that flow of crisis an instinct to join with others in order to avoid total destruction. In the aftermath of World War II, many were left without sufficient food. Particularly, there was a large number of children having lost parents during the war, and facing starvation. The vignette here entails a waif, a swatch of wheat and a dove with a string covering the flags of the recently-developed United Nations, which helped to relieve the rate of starvation. The dove's function was to attend to, however, as far as possible, the horrors of war. And the artist, Michel Hove, has impressively mustered a tone of elegant and natural equilibrium, in a cold, dark world.


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POSTER OF THE MONTH - May 2020

original vintage Italian poster Edizioni Curci c.1930
T. Cuballi
20" x 14"
A,Cardboard
Those who delve into an art form tend to have much to do with other arts and crafts. At an infrastructural level, there is a mysterious momentum which somewhat transcends the specific discipline. Our Poster of the Month for May (where the world rediscovers a striking freshness) brings these delights in subtle and touching ways.
Two young women from Milano (that hub of design arts) confidently, arm in arm, surf the waves of classical music, their buttress being an avenue of streamline musical invention that will never become old and obsolete. The woman in red prefers the problematics of Beethoven; the woman in white prefers the sweetness of Chopin. But, with the musical notes flowing at will, the endless treasure would be wide-ranging.
The protagonists proceed to show us that their taste in fashion involves material skills which could include the famous Milano furnishings and architecture. So while the screen cap pronounces, "Everywhere there is music," as complemented by the premium upon "excellence," this modest charmer of a vintage poster brings, from a long way back, the commitment to overcome that destructiveness which is part and parcel of our planet.


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POSTER OF THE MONTH - June 2020

vintage brun sports poster Bata 1950
Donald Brun
50 ½"x 35 ½"
B+, P
Where did running shoes take off? From the perspective of our era, we might easily slip into the assumption that, without enviable footwear to look not only forceful but wise, you'd have to stay at home.
Our Poster of the Month for June focuses upon the Bata Corporation as operating in Switzerland, with its little logos of the three aspects of that country, namely, Italian (bocce), French (tennis) and German (long distance running). But the thrust of "sport styles" had been promoted long before that, in the Czech headquarters of Bata. Moreover, after the company's headquarters shifted to sports-crazy Canada, that priority became a mania.
The big shoes are a metaphorical treasure-trove of transcendent desire. They seem to hover above mere humans, as if a gift from another galaxy, a galaxy of utility, modest coloration and thrift. Soon, however, the genes of fabulousness would take over, to an upshot of both crassness and innovation.


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POSTER OF THE MONTH - July 2020

vintage Canadian politics and war poster Don't Buy It c.1942
McClaren
24 1/2" x 18 1/4"
A-,L
These covid-19 days, when we're rather crushed with health and safety demands, it may be useful to note that another era had its share of unwelcome duties. During World War II, one of the tasks for the homeland was being very critical about spending money. All but the bare necessities were to be allowed, while the lion's share had to go to the war effort. A "White Elephant," denoting a frivolous spur of the moment purchase, that likely would be trashed in a few days, would have seemed a major crime in that climate, not only poor judgement but also questionable patriotism. The image portrays the troublemakers as tiny, far less than adults.
Whereas the scorned upon in that case had little cogency because its crisis provided a rich, absorbing drama (only someone with very cheap priorities failing to thrill and care about the event), during the pandemic time, we are left with a current of action seriously frozen, an exigency to pretty much do nothing but keep away from other people and contemplate the spectacle of almost total collapse. While the scientific and political pundits are at their zenith, we others experience an invasion far from a normal war.


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