Master of Poster Art
January 30, 2014
Work by Waldemar Świerzy, one of Poland’s greatest poster designers, is on show in the foyer gallery of Warsaw’s Dramatyczny Theater.
Świerzy (1931-2013) was an internationally famous graphic artist and poster designer. A professor at the Fine Arts Academies in Warsaw and Poznań, Świerzy was one of the founders of what is known as the Polish poster school. He was one of the first artists to introduce painting techniques to poster design, inspired by pop art, Art Nouveau, folk art, and comic strips. Świerzy produced posters for movies, plays, concerts and music festivals.
Exhibition curator Maria Kurpik says Świerzy’s posters are distinctive for their clear and cogent compositions. “He became famous internationally for posters in the Great People of Jazz series, with portraits of Duke Ellington and Louis Armstrong,” said Kurpik.
Świerzy’s work won him many awards in art contests, including the Grand Prix Toulouse Lautrec (Paris) for the movie L’Auberge Rouge (The Red Inn) by Claude Autant-Lary. He twice received the main prize in The Hollywood Reporter magazine’s annual film poster competition, for The Land of Promise and The Dogs of War.
He also won an award at the Biennale in Sao Paulo and gold medals at the international poster biennales in Warsaw and Lahti. Work by Świerzy is part of the collections of the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York City, the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam, the Hermitage in St. Petersburg, the Institute of Contemporary Art in London, and the Musee de la Publicité in Paris.
Until March 6; Dramatyczny Theater foyer gallery ; Palace of Culture, 1 Defilad Sq
Open noon-6 p.m. (free admission) and before performances (with a ticket)