Printed advertising has been there since the 15th Century but the poster in its modern form was not introduced to the world until around 1860. Advent of lithography and its various techniques colorful posters could easily be made in a very cost-effective manner unlike before. As a result, the technique of printing posters spread throughout the world in the 1890s, especially Europe.
This period saw a lot of vintage posters designed by well-known French artists. Posters became an integral part of campaigns and very soon transformed the avenues and boulevards of Paris, the French capital into the “art galleries of the street”. Competing shows in the city used Posters as medium to attract the audience. Many well known poster artists were in such high demand that theatre stars of that period insisted for their own favorite artist to create the poster designs of their upcoming performance.
Such kind of popularity led to the organisation of a large exhibition of posters in Paris in 1884. Some of the most popular vintage posters in history are from the same period and falls under a style known as Art Nouveau. The style was the earliest pioneer art form in which graphics were produced in large volumes for the masses.
With the world going to war in 1914, the poster art developed in an form that started shaping history and the future with it. Propaganda posters with very high mass appeal and impact came into production flooding the streets of Europe and USA. Everyone is familiar with the very famous Uncle Sam pointing at the audience, as a call to duty for the American public during the World War 1.
After the great war ended, Art Nouveau posters inspired from nature and surroundings lost its relevance in the modernistic industrial society. The world that rose from the ashes, was expressed in posters depicting the art movements of Cubism, Expressionism, Futurism and Surrealism. Throughout the last century posters have been a part campaigns and have been used for every thinkable event and product.
The last century has been a witness to the effectiveness of poster campaigns. May this historical art live long and may it continue to affect the world and ts people in wonderful ways!