Posters, with their history in marketing, communication and low-cost propaganda are designed to be both eye-catching and informative. Posters have been around almost as long as civilized society – they advertised the plays of Shakespeare, dammit! But, the modern poster, as we know it, can be traced to 1870 when the printing industry perfected color lithography which allowed for the possibility of mass production. Previously, all text or imagery could only exist in a black and white medium.
Quickly adopted en masse by great European artists, the poster famously came to be used by Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec and Pierre Bonnard. The poster has been adopted by artists of many contemporary movements (in almost any language) – from Bauhaus to Art Nouveau to Surrealism to Cubism and Hippie Counter Culture.
Not just for college dorm walls anymore!
A home theater has inviting velvet chairs, funny Mexican movie posters and pillows made from vintage silk scarves. The home on the Oregon Coast was decorated by Jessica Helgerson Interior Design. Photograph by Lincoln Barbour.
The classic, French wine and spirits poster features a simple image of a bottle laying back at an angle with a ghost of a glass superimposed. The Art Deco design was created by Lajos Marton in 1921. The clever image is an easy way to bring an antique, time-travelling vibe to an otherwise contemporary space.
The Coburg, Melbourne home of Emilio Fuscaldo and Anna Krien. Photography by Sean Fennessy. Styling by Lucy Feagins of The Design Files. The color of an exposed brick wall, is the perfect backdrop for the German advertisement of Zoologischer Garten München featuring leopards.
A Chicago, Illinois home, with close proximity to Wrigleyville, pays homages to the stadium lifestyle with a retro Coca Cola poster by Alan Design Studio.
Not able to purchase reproductions or giclee canvas prints? Head over to FreeVintagePoster.com for 100% free downloads of classic designs. Many of the retro images are sourced from the Public Domain, Library of Congress and other libraries. Free Vintage Posters offers hundreds of high quality printable posters in advertising, travel, food, drink, art, movies, westerns, military, magic and more. Download these high-quality, professionally scanned beauties, print on heavy stock and frame them yourself for an decor inexpensive option!
A contemporary residence in Hilldale, California by SÜZA Design features an incredible book and movie poster collection. To unifiy the multi-colored area, each poster was framed in a thin, clean and black, museum quality frame. All furniture and wall fixtures are in soft, neutral tones which allow the space to not become overwhelming.
A fan of movie posters? Head to FVP for many retro options, here.
Ouriço Arquitetura e Design‘s vintage French posters bring levity to a children’s room. The space in Impanema is bright and cheery with a sense of humor. Jour de fête, is a 1949 French film by Jacques Tati. I particilarly love the industrial, blue table lamps on an antique trunk.