Those who find regular museums boring and can’t look at old-timey paintings without fighting yawns will find a more fun museum visit at the Poster House in New York City. This cool new museum is bringing posters, an art medium often forgotten, to the forefront.
The Poster House is the first of its kind in the US, and its goal is to “present a global view of posters from their earliest appearance in the late 1800s, to their present-day use.” The 15,000-square-foot venue has over 7,000 historical posters and 1,000 contemporary ones — a collection that might seem staggering to those who have never given posters a second thought.
The museum believes that shifting social and political trends can be viewed through the lens of posters throughout the years. According to its website, posters are critical for exploring “mass communication and persuasion, the intersection of art and commerce, and control of the public domain.” Julia Knight, director of the Poster House, explained to The Guardian, “Here, posters are a focal point and not an accessory.”
Inaugural exhibitions feature poster designers Alphonse Mucha — a 19th-century designer famous for incorporating Art Nouveau elements into his poster advertisements — and Cyan, a more modern Geman graphic design agency, and one of the first to utilize Photoshop and QuarkXPress.