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’Round the World ’Round the Clock
via Pan American 1955
42 ½” x 28 ¼”
A-, P

vintage transportation posterThis is a transportation poster design that eschews flashy vehicles. In fact it eschews every tincture of hardware--- opting as it does for an hourglass motif instead of a mechanical or high tech timepiece! Its theme, of an airline that routinely moves 'round the world and 'round the clock (moves, that is, in unprecedented ways for its time) is encompassed in an exuberant and subtle flourish of arts and design initiatives of the early 20th century.
You don't find many vintage posters taking direction from Russian Supremacist, Kazimir Malevich. But those red and black chevrons spell over-the-top dynamics from the era where mysterious motion was feted by the daring contrarians of the dawning of the modern era. You do find quite a few of those Surrealist pink clouds to imply that your flight is going farther than you thought. The Constructivist touch on the central hourglass gets pretty much high-jacked by art deco pampering. And then we have Moderne in the flip way the typography works.
Somehow this complex of hustling around seems neither lazily contrived nor self-conscious. The designer was truly caught up in the strange multiplicity of modern change, taking a shot of a spring-green world as headed for more thrills than before.

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