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The Art of the Poster: from Toulouse-Lautrec to Shepard Fairey

Now on view at the Hallmark Art Collection Gallery, this exhibit chronicles 125 years of poster design, a modern art form given impetus by the advancement of color lithography techniques in the nineteenth century.

In the 1880s, vanguard artists such as Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec seized upon this new and versatile method of mass reproduction, creating designs that were as poignant and provocative as their own drawings and paintings. While primarily conceived as advertising vehicles, original posters by modern masters are now as prized as any printmaking media. Today, activist artists such as Shepard Fairey, continue to favor the poster medium as a unique hybrid of graphic communication and fine art, creating works that are equally cherished by collectors.

The Art of the Poster focuses on three key moments in the development of the art form, beginning with original posters from La Belle Époque (“the beautiful age”) by such masters as Pierre Bonnard and Alphonse Mucha; Art Deco posters from the 1920s-30s, including iconic works by A.M. Cassandre and Roger Perot; and rock concert posters of the 1960s by psychedelic artists such as Victor Moscoso and Wes Wilson. An early work by Shepard Fairey depicting a 19th century litho press serves as a culmination of the historic lineup of posters. It promotes his signature Propaganda Printing Services and encourages the public to “THINK & CREATE” as well as to “PRINT & DESTROY.”

This visually stimulating exhibit is on display through June 17 at the Hallmark Art Collection Gallery in Hallmark Visitors Center in Kansas City, Missouri.

For more information visit: www.hallmarkvisitorscenter.com

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