Wednesday, March 9, 2011

British Postal Posters

Spotted over at Vintage Poster Blog are these postal posters designed from 1935 through the 50s for the British General Postal Office, or GPO. The use of design for marketing the GPOs public services was a tremendous public relations tool to promote communication and community. They commissioned a wide range of artists and designers including Paul Nash, Edward McKnight Kauffer and Hans Schleger (AKA Zero). Interestingly, this was about the same period that the US government initiated the WPA (Work Progress Administration) campaign, which was a government funded arts program in the states. I'm not sure which came first—the GPO or the WPA—but they both helped to promote useful public services and provided much needed income to many fine artists during hard economic times. 

The first 4 posters at the top are from the Vintage Poster blog and I have to wonder if the GPO only hired artists by the name of Hans. The first poster at top is designed by Hans Unger, 1951. No. 2 is designed by Hans Schleger, 1941. No. 3 is Hans Arnold Rothholz, 1955. No. 4 is Hans Schleger, 1945. 

Posters 5 through 7 are from the British Postal Museum & Archive. No. 5 poster is designed by Frederic Henri Kay Henrion, 1950. No. 6 is by Alick Knight, 1953. No. 7, the last in line, is another from Hans Arnold Rothholz, 1950. 

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