The APFF 2015 Polish Poster Exhibit Spans 75 Years

A Word From The Curator, Michal Poniz

The Exhibition of posters accompanying the 10th Annual Polish Film Festival attempts to illustrate the art of poster design in Poland from late 1940's until now, with emphasis on so called " Polish School of Poster" which flourished from mid  1950's until 1980's .  
This movement is not unified but rather diverse in style , as the artists were able to create free from constraints of the clients , which at that time consisted of only one ; the State .
Paradoxically, the State (once Stalinist Social Realism was no longer imposed ) did not get involved with aesthetic nuances , leaving the artist luxury to create designs that brought an individual voice to poster images . From surreal- baroque designs of Franciszek Starowieyski to child-like creations of Jan Mlodozeniec , each of the artist displayed his own style , painterly in most cases, with hand drawn letters as part of the composition . The unifying aspect of the movement was approach to interpreting the subject.
Whether the poster was created for a movie , theatre play or an opera , the effort was to capture the spirit of a given work . This was done thru allusion using visual symbol , metaphor or allegory . In that way these works became more of an art form than a commercial design .
It is no accident that many of poster designers became the Artists , quite famous in Poland . Among others, the most successful were ; Henryk Tomaszewski, Tadeusz Trepkowski, Eryk Lipinski, Jozef Mroszczak , Wojciech Zamecznik, Jan Lenica, Roman Cieslewicz , Jan Mlodozeniec, Jerzy Flisak, Franciszek Starowieyski ,  Waldemar Swierzy , Andrzej Pagowski . Some , like Roman Opalka or Wojciech Fangor became celebrated painters , whose works now sell in hundreds of thousands of dollars .
The posters shown here are only a small part of my collection which now consists of over 10,000 pieces acquired in the last 40 years . I bought them directly from the artists, another collectors , old movie houses, theaters , and trades with museums .  

If you'd like to find out more about Polish Posters , I suggest reading
'The legacy of Polish Poster Design' at www. smashingmagazine.com

For visuals visit www.cinemaposters.com

If you have any questions and/or are interested in purchasing some of these images please contact me anytime.
Michael Poniz
mponiz@yahoo.com
512-705-6665