Thursday, March 7, 2013

Polish Poster Art 1952-1984

Wojcieh Fangor (1922), Picasso 1957, France. colour offset, 86.0 x 61.5 cm, reg. no. 1996.4666. The University of Melbourne Art Collection. Gift of Gerard Herbst 1996. © Unknown

Believe it or not one of the three largest public collections of Polish Posters in the world is located at the University of Melbourne. Who would have thunk it? An exhibition of Polish posters, Polish Poster Arts 1952-1984, is on right now at the Ian Potter Museum of Art. I stopped in recently, heart just a little swelled with patriotic pride, and took in the 70-odd posters (from a collection of over 2000). They looked good. Really good. My companion and I were divided on the hang; several of the works are hung salon-style. With such intense images, did they need a little more room to breathe? I didn’t think so. On the way down the stairs I passed a hipster wearing a LOT t-shirt (Poland’s national airline). I wanted to stop him and ask, “Hey, who are you?.” It was a lunch time that sent me backwards in time, to post-war Europe, it’s hopes and anxieties, and forwards into the future. I wondered, when is technology going to catch up with my science fiction vision, retinal scanning software that would actually tell me the name of that dude on the stairs by the blink of an eye.

Polish Poster Arts 1952-1984
Ian Potter Museum of Art, University of Melbourne
26 January – 26 May 2013

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