Carlos Gardel, an Exhibition and ParisPosters

We at ParisPosters are proud to have been able to play a small part in an amazing homage to the very “soul” of the Tango, Carlos Gardel. This exhibition will take place in Buenos Aires next month and looks to be fantastic! We were contacted by representatives of the exhibition at Buenos Aires who then purchased this poster for their show. If you find yourself in Argentina next month, do check it out!

carlos gardel exhibition

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Posters of Paris…Affichomanie!

Yesterday, I made the easy trip to Milwaukee Wisconsin and paid a visit to the Milwaukee Art Museum (MAM).  The museum itself is spectacular!  This unique structure is the work of Eero Saarinen who designed the War Memorial Center and of Santiago Calatrava who designed the Quadracci Pavillion, an exhibition space like nothing else.  It is a huge, elegant white construction, a cross between the prow of a ship and a soaring seagull overlooking Lake Michigan.  For me, worth a trip in itself.

But I had another reason to pay a visit.  The Museum now has a poster exhibition, Posters of Paris Toulouse Lautrec & His Contemporaries.  Unfortunately, this exhibition will on be at the museum through this weekend but then it is scheduled to move to The Dallas Museum.

 The exhibition has captured Paris in the 1890′s, the Fin de Siecle, an era when Paris became an open air museum of fantastic posters.  Positive energy emanating from bold, playful and joyous filled the streets.  Affichomanie, Poster Mania thrived!  Posters were ripped from billboards and kiosques and sold.  This phenomon gaverise to the Maitres de l”Affiche series, a way in which people smaller sized posters better suited for collections.

The Museum has not only examples of the posters but also photographs of the Parisian Boulevards.  There was a huge 6 panel poster, a reflection of what the crowds admiring the posters looked like. There were many examples of the stages that the poster artists would go through to arrive at their finished work and even samples of the metalics used by Mucha.  Interestingly, some posters were actually considered too risque even by Parisian standards and there are over-lays to illustrate how the poster may have been originally intended and how the body was later draped for public eyes.

So then I think of some of my favorite poster artists and favorite posters from this era. The women of Mucha are so elegantly beautiful.  Slavia comes right to mind.  And Lautrec, his characters are complicated, so much more than meets the eye.  Le Divan Japonais, now what were those people thinking?!  Personally, I love Cheret. His women embody a zest for life!  The women in his poster, Concert des Ambassadeurs are having a ball!  And then there is that beautiful poster for Massenet’s operetta, Cendrillon.  Love it!

If you do have time and are in the area in the next few days, I so highly recommend a trip to the Milwaukee Art Musem.  If not, perhaps a trip to Dallas is in your future?!


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Lichtenstein, Creative Genius…Original Vintage Posters

Yesterday, I went to The Art Institute of Chicago where I visited the on-going exhibition of the works of Roy Lichtenstein.  It is a huge exhibition, the first major survey of his work since his death in 1997. It covers 50 years of Lichtenstein’s art and includes over 100 paintings and some sculptures and drawings that have never previously been publicly shown.  For me, enlightening.  While I have enjoyed his Pop Art “comic book” style, I was never aware of the depth and the scope of this artist’s work.  The exhibition is only in Chicago for another 2 weeks but then will travel to the National Gallery in Washington, DC and finally to Paris’ Centre Pompidou .  I highly recommend that, should you find yourself in one of these cities, you check it out.  Actually, the Lichtenstein exhibition may be the perfect excuse to visit Paris or Washington!

I was particularly taken with a section that is comprised of paintings of mirrors, mirrors that reflect nothing but capture the essence of “mirror-ness”.  Lichtenstein worked within his well established patterns of dots, flat blocks of color and strong lines and curves to give the impression of light and reflection.  The impression of reflection, not reflection.  Absolutely fantastic!!

In another section, he has parodied some extremely well known artistic pieces, re-creating them in a style all his own.  I was taken by Lichtenstein’s rendering of Brancusi’s Sleeping Head, one of my all time favorite sculptures.

There are several of Lichtenstein’s Art Deco sculptures done in the years 1967-68.  He has recreated elegant Art Deco motifs found in the theatres of the 20′s and 30′s.  As the wall-text, explains, Lichtenstein has “humorously stylized an already stylized style”.  A “must see”!

So then, I go to the Poster Catalogue.  While we have but two Lichtenstein posters, they are 2 very different ones.  Our webmaster has the MOMA poster on the wall in his office so I have spent many hours with that dramatic woman representative of Lichtenstein’s best known style.  The poster for the exhibition at the Daniel Templon Gallery show cases his mastery of bold brush strokes.

Roy Lichtenstein is a multifaceted artist.  Get to this exhibition if you possibly can.  A real treat!

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Wine, the Harvest and Original Vintage Posters

Earlier in the week, I helped my friends with their annual vendemmia, or grape harvest.  Ten years ago, my friend retired from a highly successful career and has applied the same passion, determination and intelligence that served him so well for the first 70 years of his life into wine production.  But not in his native Italy or even in California, rather in Wisconsin.  His vineyards are located in the Kettle Moraine district.   Many many years ago the Green Bay lobe of glacier collided with the Lake Michigan lobe and in the process, created a small kettles or lakes and rolling terraced fertile land.  Beautiful to say the least!

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Rome, Love and Original Vintage Posters

Last night, I went to see To Rome With LoveWoody Allen’s latest film. While, at least for me, it lacked the layered “meanings” of Midnight in Paris, it was “happy”, an enchanting comedy set in an extremely beautiful and photogenic city.  The movie is comprised of four separate vignettes that some how Allen has combined into a whole.  It is a very romantic movie.  I was intrigued and captivated by the bizarre predicaments that the actors managed to get into and then out of.  And the music!!  Wonderful bold, spirited Italian music!! Fabio Armiliato, the renown tenor, is one of the stars.  And while he sings in the most silly of all venues, boy does he sing!  You must go listen.

So, naturally, now I miss Rome and I miss the opera.  Luckily I have the posters to help me to fantasize a trip back to Rome and the elegance of the opera!  I look to Air France Rome by Nathan.  Take me there!  Guy Georget’s Air France Italie or Georges Mathieu’s Air France Italie both have me searching for a suitcase.  And then the opera.  What shall I see?  Perhaps something by Massenet, Le Cid or Cendrillon?  And by now you must all know about my passion for Italian food and particularly for eating in Rome.   Back to that happy portrait of me gobbling noodles, Pates Coop!

The movies and the posters really both serve to enrich my life.  They just plain make me happy!


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Sanibel Island, Summer and Vintage Posters

I have been fortunate to have been able to spend the past few weeks on Sanibel Island.  While the island is always, gorgeous, at least for me, summer is the most magical of seasons.  The crowds are gone.  The air, ocean and humidity are all the same number, a soft 90.  Every thing grows!  Mangoes and sea grapes and palm trees.  In the late afternoon, a storm will roll by.  A different beauty.  Grey beauty.  The trees sway.  The thunder roars and the lightning is vertical.  And then usually, it is over and the sun is right back for another hour.  Last night, however, it was different.  It rained all night long, soft,  steady  and peaceful rain.  And this morning when i walked I had a special treat.  I was serenaded by frogs!

Every little swampy puddle was filled with them.  The sound was fantastic!  And then, the most incredible sight of all…cat fish had crawled out from a pond, were on the gravel and crawling right back in!  Fish out of water but fish who very much appeared to know what they were doing.

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Charlie Chaplin, Silent Movies…Original Vintage Posters

Last night I went to the movies and saw an absolutely fantastic “new” old silent movie, Charlie Chaplin’s, The Gold Rush.  This 1925 film, was written, produced and stars the acting genius, Charlie Chaplin.  We are all familiar with some incredible scenes from this movie.  Charlie Chaplin has elevated the process of eating his shoe to avoid starvation to a level where it is positively unforgettable. Poking forks into potatoes and turning them into magical dancing legs, wow, how can he do that?!  But despite its reputation as one of the great masterpieces of silent cinema, The Gold Rush has long been unavailable in its original form.  In 1942, Chaplin issued a “sound” version and he also directed that the silent version be screened only with a live orchestra.  Luckily for all of us, Ceneteca Bologna and Janus Films, with permission from the Chaplin estate,  has presented a 35 mm restoration with a newly recorded musical score.  Take my advice, go see and listen to The Gold Rush!

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Strong Women… Paintings and Posters

When I was in Paris, I paid a visit to one of my favorite museums, the Musee Maillol, a small gem founded by Dina Vierny, Maillol’s muse.  There I saw a fantastic exhibition, Artemisia Gentilesch, Power, Glory and Passions of a Woman Painter.  Gentilesch was an early baroque painter, working in an era where woman were to be passive or objects of beauty and desire she was anything but!  In fact, it took three centuries for her work to be recognized and appreciated.  Her exceptional talent and strong character have made her an example for the feminist movements that have come along far after her death but it was these same attributes that served to delay her recognition as a serious artist. In 1991, there was the first major exhibition in Florence but it consisted of only her small personal paintings.  In 2001 she shared an exhibition with her father but this exhibition at the Musee Maillol is the first to show her strong, powerful, feminist work.  Awesome!  The exhibition runs through July 15, so if you are in Paris this summer, make a stop at the Musee Maillol!

So, then, of course, I think about original vintage posters.  While women were so often the depicted in posters, very few women have actually been poster artists.  However, to my mind, several poster artists have been able to envision women as more than objects of beauty.  Jules Cheret depicted free-spirited women, a modern and egalitarian view.  The woman proudly dancing in Au Quartier Latin leads her partner and radiates joy.  And then there are the Political PostersMucha who generally depicts woman as delicate and exotic, has created a strong, defiant woman in L’Aiglon. It would be difficult to be tougher or more determined than the woman carrying the power of France above her head in Phili’s, Liberation.

If any of you are familiar with the painitings of Artemisia Gentilesch or have seen this exhibition, I would welcome your thoughts and opinions.


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Needlework, Textiles, the Art of the Household and Vintage Posters

Last week I was fortunate enough to catch a wonderful exhibition at The Art Institute.  It was a small exhibition and unfortunately will be closing this weekend but one so worth seeing, Fabric of a Nation: American Needlework & Textiles 1776-1840.  The works themselves were beautiful, quilts, coverlets and samplers, all hand sewn or woven, but for me a least, what these creations represented were even more interesting.  These were all prized possessions, prized far beyond their dollar values,  These works of art all had a strong emotional connection both for the women who created them, and also for their descendants. They were in many cases, the anchor of the household.  It is also very much worth noting that sewing was one of the few artistic venues that was socially acceptable for women and girls, and a venue in which to shine.  If you find yourself in Chicago this weekend, do go. Very impressive!

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Italy, Italian Food and Vintage Posters

Yesterday, I had an incredible lunch with incredible friends on Chicago’s near west side, our “Little Italy”.  The restaurant was delicious, Davanti,  a cozy and friendly enoteca, a wine bar.  We ate and we drank wine and told stories all afternoon.  As the afternoon wore on, our stories became more and more animated and as my friends are Italian, the hand gestures became increasingly grander.  Before long, the elegant wine glass began to tumble and our gracious server demoted us to water tumblers and cups of espresso but what a happy afternoon we had!  We created our own little mini visit to Italy.

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Happy Easter, Happy Passover, Happy Springtime….Happy Vintage Posters!

For so many people, this weekend is one of celebration.  Whether you observe Easter, Passover or the arrival of spring and her flowers, it is definitely a time to rejoice.

A time to pull out the finery and to dress for the occasion. Do wish that I could only look a bit as lovely as Goude’s sprite in Eau Eden or maybe as elegant as the woman in Gruau’s Hommage a Christian Dior but oh well, I am fortunate enough to be able to spend the holidays with all of my children!

I have just returned from a shopping expedition and my home is filled with flowers that are almost as gorgeous as those in Composition Florale .  Think that I may be as filled with Springtime joy as the man in Savignc’s Foire de Printemps Dijon!

Our warmest wishes for wonderful holidays!  Happy Spring!Spending time with them does make me as happy and as carefree as the little creatures driving the cart in the Naranjas Ricardo Lilacer poster.

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St Patrick’s Day… Celebrations and Vintage Posters!

St Patrick’s Day, celebrated internationally on March 17, is a joyful holiday.  One which for me, heralds the upcoming spring and the end of winter!

St Patrick, recognized as the patron saint of Ireland, is credited with having brought Roman Italian Christianity to that country.  Originally, it was celebrated as a feast day.  Lenten restrictions were lifted.  People were free to drink alcohol indulge in rich foods.  Now it has become quite secularized, celebrated with parades, wearing green and of course,  lots of eating and drinking!

St Patrick was associated with the color blue, not green! It is said that he used shamrocks which have three leaves and grow wildly in the Irish country side to explain to the Pagans living there the concept of the Holy Trinity, and so, that is perhaps the reasons why we now think green and shamrocks when we consider the holiday. By now you all know me. I think holiday and I think vintage posters. The first ones that come to my mind are the Irish Travel Posters, the Map and Ireland for Your Holidays, really do make it inviting!

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Leap Year…Traditions and Vintage Posters

Leap Year by Davidson Bobby vintage posterThis year, 2012, is a Leap Year. As we all well know, this means that February is one day longer, 29 days, as opposed to the usual 28. This is done to keep the calendar year in sync with the seasonal year. I guess that over time, things would just drift out of order. Eventually, snow on the 4th of July?!

In ancient cultures, women could propose marriage only in Leap Years.  Marriages in Leap Years have always been considered to be lucky.  So I think of the loving couple in Le Cantique des Cantiques, Marc Chagall’s romantic poster and of the passionate couple in the movie poster, Marriage a l’Italienne and hope that both tied the knot in a leap year!

The summer Olympic Games take place in Leap Years.  Actually, until 1992, so did the Winter Games. So I reflect on how Serge Poliakoff  and Saul Bass captured the power of the Summer Olympics in their posters, Munich Olympic Games  and XXIII Olympiad. 

While an extra day in February does actually mean an extra day of winter, look what we have in store, happy marriages and the Summer Olympics! Enjoy!





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Valentines, Love, Romance and Vintage Posters

Valentine’s Day is one of my favorite holidays.  Such a wonderful break to winter that by now seems endless.  Such a joy to step back and to think of those whom we love and those who bring joy to our lives.  Plus yet another excuse to indulge in chocolates, champagne and fresh flowers, as if I actually needed an excuse!

And of course, I then think about how the poster artists have captured love and romance.  Villemot’s couple entwined in such a passionate embrace in his Perrier c’est Fou Rainbow, well, wow can it get much better than that?!  Well, maybe.  Comte du Luxembourg sure seems smitten by the damsel in the red dress!  And then there is little cupid sipping his vermouth and sending signals in Vermout Perucchi, amour, c’est vrai!   For me, the beautiful welcoming woman in Duquesne’s Tahiti personifies inviting love.  And we must also consider the happy passion of the couple in Arnold’s Bata Clan!

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Winter, Cold, Snow and Vintage Posters

After a unusually “balmy” start, winter is back with a vengeance!  Lots of snow, lots of ice and not very much sunshine.  Plus, another 7 inches of the white stuff is predicted for tomorrow! Not at all my favorite season!!

But then when I go through the posters, I am remined just how gorgeous the season actually is. Looking at the grace and calm of the skaters in Bad Schinznach by Ernst, I am tempted to dig out my old figure skates. And then when I see Eze’s poster, Les Sports d’Hiver aux Pyrennees, well maybe I would actually enjoy sledding?! Or perhaps a quick trip to Sun Valley Idaho by Union Pacific?!

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Happy new year, Joyeuses Fêtes, Bonne Année….with vintage Posters!

As we approach the end of 2011 and anticipate the new year, it is our pleasure to wish all of you, our friends and our clients, the best that 2012 has to offer.

I am fortunate to be celebrating in Paris where the streets and the outdoor markets bustle.  A strong emphasis on food and wine and cooking!  Lines form out the door at favorite bakeries and butcher shops. The kitchen supply shops bulge with shoppers and I am in my element! So I think of the posters and the ones which I think so capture the excitement of this holiday indulging.  Rene Gruau, obviously one of my favorite poster artists, has done a super job with his Pims Cake poster. Such elegance and such pleasure all from a box of cookies! And the Veuve Amiot poster byFalcucci to my mind has captured the joy of sharing a glass of champagne. Jean Carlu depicts the thrill of anticipating holiday gifts in his poster, Au Bon Marché.

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Portraits… Degas, Rembrandt and Posters

I was lucky enough to have spent last weekend in the Berkshires, always a beautiful place to be, but at this time of the year, the crowds are gone.  All is quiet, stark and elegant.

Saturday we drove to the campus of Williams College in Williamstown, MA and paid a visit to the Clark Museum where there is an exhibition of portraits by Rembrandt and Degas. The exhibition focuses on how the work of Rembrandt influenced and inspired Degas. Degas is quoted as having said, “What I do is the result of reflection and study of great masters“.  This small exhibition pairs the etchings of both artists and shows how the techniques developed by Rembrandt were employed by Degas.  The portraits done by both artists thoroughly capture the complexities of their subjects.  It is a small exhibition but one with so much to see and the think about.

So the, of course, I consider the amazing portrait work done by some of the poster artists.  While so different from the portraits at the Clark, the psychedelic-style Angel 67 by Thompson conveys the power and the confusion of the biker.  Bal des Arts, the work of Paul Colin, has captured  joy and confidence.  And Picasso in the poster for Galerie Matarasso, has used his fantastic skill with line drawing much as Rembrandt and Degas have done, to reflect on the complicated and thoughtful nature of his subject.

If you are in the area, do visit the Clark, but if you are not, well then just please visit our website and appreciate the wonders of the portrait artists!

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The Thanksgiving Celebration Captured by Posters

Next Thursday is the joyous Thanksgiving holiday here in the US. It is actually one of my very favorite holidays. Thanksgiving is a day to reflect upon our blessings and to share our bounty with family and friends. And it is also a day for feasting! And for cooking! And usually for a little champagne!

We wish you all a wonderful celebration. May you dine with the gusto of the little girl in Chesnot’s Pates Coop poster. May your party sparkle with the glitter of Champagne Edouard Aube. And may you avoid the frenzy of the poor woman in the Chocolat Carpentier poster!

Our very warmest wishes for a joyous Thanksgiving! We are very thankful for all of you.

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