SPEAKING OF PICTURES: A VINTAGE GRAPHICS BLOG

I DESIRE VINTAGE POSTERS TURNING 30! (PART FOUR)

We welcome the World Wide Web  in 2000!

Our first sighting of the rich vein of vintage poster art happened in New York City. After many years of cherishing the City as a seductive hub of dance, fine art and literature (the latter area being seen as a market for our wares), we were in a kind of seventh heaven on discovering a new world to explore.

That history provided a special delight when, near the outset of our internet days, the New York Times, Summer, 2001, ran an article about us in their digital design head’s up column, The Circuit Section! Though a website was obviously necessary by the year 2000–when, incidentally, we left our day-jobs to become full-time vintage poster dealers–we were far from internet-savvy and several years passed before, with our third and present webmaster, we were fully en route.
Our story today (and again, next week) covers the stages of idesirevintageposters.com

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I DESIRE VINTAGE POSTERS TURNING 30! (PART THREE)

One late evening on arriving at the Torino train station, we were met by five-year-old twin boys each holding their hand made poster. Along with their  parents, they treated us not only royally but also stole our hearts for 3 amazing days! As we roamed around the Italian North-West extremities (Castellemonte region) with them (the Swiss Alps always in view), we did delight in their lithos. But even more than that, we felt we had come upon very special humans.

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I DESIRE VINTAGE POSTERS TURNING 30! (PART TWO)

At the time covered by our first I Desire Vintage Posters  anniversary blog ( Jan. 31) , we were, on week-days, occupied with jobs and working evenings and weekends with our vintage poster business. It was a fun, busy and challenging time. Our goal was that one day we could begin to focus full-time with I Desire. In the 1990’s our salaries were directed toward building our inventory. We became very active in acquiring part of the still-voluminous cache of lithos to be found at doable prices in Europe. This was  very fortunate timing to have begun our business when we did. Our posting today and next week  will give a tiny sense of where we’ve been and who we met, to our great-good luck! (The many trips we made extended from 5 weeks to 4 1/2 months.)

Our first scene, in Torino, has been chosen inasmuch as it emphasizes the personal flow of contacts which marked so many of our dealings (and which echoes the nature of our home/ studio situation).   Continue reading

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WHERE WE’VE BEEN—I DESIRE VINTAGE POSTERS TURNING 30!

On Friday, February 13, 1987 we  began our business as I Desire Vintage Posters. During this month, we will be posting several blogs covering a few highlights of the three decades  of our business and pleasure activities. Our entryway-visual, showing wonders and beauties of electricity, by that great graphic artist, A.M. Cassandre, gets a bit ahead of itself, inasmuch as we began our business affairs in vintage graphic art with only hard-copy paper advertising and photo prints to alert a hopefully eager world at large.    Continue reading

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AWKWARD AND FASCINATING FIGURES IN VINTAGE GRAPHICS

 

Pochoir Venetian Ladieshttp://www.idesirevintageposters.com/pochoir-venetian-ladies-c1920.html

One of the joys of our work with vintage fashion graphics is encountering the assurance and brilliance of many of the major artists of the art deco era. Designers like, Georges Lepape, George Barbier, Andre Marty, Umberto Brunelleschi and Eduardo Benito, seem never to falter in their mission of presenting women at their most graceful moments.

But, through the years, we have occasionally been struck by imagery where the lady does not seem to be at ease in her finery. There is, I believe, a concern (far from mere carelessness) to insinuate a dimension of haute couture usually hidden away but revealing , if pressed, malaise far more modern than the bulk of blissfulness the trade expects.

Our first display of Carnival-in-Venice extravagance shows a rather underwhelming output of preening (in headwear that was a mistake) which exacerbates their not being well-prepared for the occasion, leaving them looking like spoiled children. Hopefully, in other contexts, they might show some poise. But what they’ve shown us, unequivocally, is that legendary experience is not primarily about material wealth.    Continue reading

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CHRISTMAS 1943—NEAR AND DEAR

Harpers Vertes Dec,1943http://www.idesirevintageposters.com/artistic-magazines-harpers-bazaar-december-1943.html

Long before there was Cyber Monday there was the more direct World War II, presenting, among other things, a weighty Christmas shopping dilemma. Wrapped up in the glorious Christmas shopping number seen above, we bring to you here (with its surreal Christmas tree by by that same Marcel Vertes who oversaw the visuals and won a couple of Oscars in connection with John Huston’s film, Moulin Rouge [1952]), a true feast of struggle to make merry at death’s door.

In this season when designer Tom Ford has cropped up in the capacity of an auteur, with his Nocturnal Animals, the many forerunners in our pages here, of inflected celebration, give us their own incisive take on the nocturnal. Continue reading

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REVISITING PERE CASTOR’S SERIES OF CHILDREN’S BOOKS

perecastor-scaf

When I, in the 1990’s first encountered the Pere Castor stories (primarily from the 1930s), it was the illustrative and lithographic strengths which enchanted me. Then, on getting down to the French texts, I was delighted anew by the deft and delicate portrayal of wild animals embodying loving gratitude, brave sacrifice and endurance.

In recent years I’ve become aware (thanks to my good friend and fascinating connoisseur of the arts, Sam Juliano) of  the many beautiful children’s illustrated books in the running for the prestigious Caldecott Medal, presented in January each year. To my great surprise I find that many of the writers and illustrators often approach their wide-ranging subjects with a passionate care for the possibilities of grace and the rich fleetingness of life.

There are of course differences of nuance between the widespread eras; but it is to me a matter of good cheer that those long ago French instances of panache and daring have been maintained in our times of  conspicuous attention  to technology and conspicuous carelessness about serious reflection

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VINTAGE POSTERS TOUT FARM LIFE

agricoltorihttp://www.idesirevintageposters.com/boccasile-agricoltori-1953.html

For this 250th poster design blog we’ve chosen a subject having been part of a recently reasserted lifestyle, namely, working with their hands, especially farming. This is a change of pace for us (and why not, on a special occasion) for a metier infatuated with the chic and the trendy.

But, on the other hand, we must add that the lively center of vintage lithographic poster production had, from its inception with not terribly academic figures like Toulouse-Lautrec, been–over and above turning a buck–very pleased to catch the public’s eye with products and services rendered as hallmarks of history getting less and less ascetic and stodgy. The step needed now is to convey the fact that seemingly hard-core conventional rural life carries a premium on the earthy which has a secret energy seldom articulated and carried to regions of discernment amazingly coinciding with the precious Parisiennes tearing things up in composition and chromatic pop in vintage poster art.

Our first vintage poster illustration of the matter of working with one’s whole body shows a composite of outdoor-workers alert to the higher things! Continue reading

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ABUSED AND ENDANGERED WILDLIFE GRACING VINTAGE POSTERS

scandinavia-sas-far-east-craneshttp://www.idesirevintageposters.com/nielsen-far-east-by-sas-cranes-c.1959.html

We live in an age when invention has never been more abundant and thrilling. Arts and science-based inventions carry us to seemingly vast improvements over the way it used to be.

Egged on by a sensation-cued media, we are all susceptible to involvement in cool and risky business as feeding a vague need to rise above that banality which so readily drags us down. Thus, the flat-out personal consumption and large-scale, nature-damaging factors of this adventure generally come to light as a manageable minus-side of an irresistible plus-side.

Our cleverness not being amenable to the possibility that most of our excitements are overrated and a pathetic excuse for cogent intensity, there is an inadequate commitment to curtailing the despoliation of the environment. As a result, in the past twenty or so years huge numbers of wild animals have been killed, with many species entirely wiped out or reduced to the point of endangerment to total disappearance.

That disconcerting history comprises the irony of vintage graphic designs promoting travel to countries no longer the treasure-trove of wildlife they once could celebrate and profit from. Exotica still obtains–the porn trade, for instance, never more lucrative–but the gift of real wildness has largely disappeared. Our first such blue-chip promotion deals–from the perspective of the present, delusionally–with the once-abundant and breathtakingly gorgeous red-crowned crane, not that long ago very numerous in Japan, Korea and China; but now down to about 2500. Continue reading

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WORKPLACE WORKS IN THE FORM OF VINTAGE GRAPHIC ART

boac-takes-good-care-of-you-gold
http://www.idesirevintageposters.com/transportation-fly-boac-takes-good-care-of-you-c.1955-gold.html

The way we work for a living transmits much about the historical moment and possibilities of fruitful interaction.

The team-work depicted photographically in our first vintage poster is about treating others royally to ensure market share. But it is also about hospitality workers rising to an occasion that rewards them beyond a paycheck.The military precision of this highlight of the flight conveys everyday pleasures being delivered in safe and sound circumstances despite the airline zoom.  Continue reading

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