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Posters on media history

Opening of the temporary exhibition of the German Museum of Books and Writing of the German National Library in Leipzig on 11 March 2013

Press release:  6.3.2013

"Posters on media history" is the title of the spring exhibition of the German Museum of Books and Writing of the German National Library in Leipzig. The exhibition provides an insight into some of the museum's unexploited treasures: 100 posters from more than 100 years, the subjects of which allow media history to be explored in two ways - as a source of knowledge and for enjoyment. The public opening of the exhibition will start at 19:30 on 11 March 2013 during the run-up to the Leipzig Book Fair.

Be it for goods, services, cultural events, parties or propaganda - posters carry easily understood messages and images designed to seduce and persuade people out on the street. Their whole purpose is for the message to be understood in an instant. Having established themselves as an artistic genre in their own right in France, Great Britain and the USA, the success of posters is attributable to the severe economic competition which prevailed in the 19th century. And to this day posters have retained their place in public spaces, despite competition with the varied hybrid modern media world.

The focus of the exhibition is on posters which advertise media. For ink, books, newspapers or radio, television, series of readings or Twitter - posters always represent seismographs and mirrors which record and reflect a certain period in time and its preoccupations. Paper-based notices have been fulfilling this function for more than 100 years now. The chronologically ordered exhibition starts with the artistic picture posters of the 1890s, continues with visually powerful advertising posters from the early 20th century and commercial art from Germany, Austria and Switzerland through to current international design ideas for media advertising, including for the Web. The exhibition also focuses on design elements of commercial art which have remained constant throughout. The motifs of the posters are explored on the basis of three aspects - "Reading", the "Colour Red" and the "Animal".

The media help mould culture - and posters do it demonstratively and with a mass impact, urgently and seductively, colourfully and on a large scale.

Posters on media history
Exhibition in the German Museum of Books and Writing of the German National Library in Leipzig

12 March to 31 August 2013
Opening on 11 March 2013 at 19:30

Welcome: Michael Fernau, Director of the German National Library in Leipzig
Introduction: Dr. Stephanie Jacobs, Head of the German Museum of Books and Writing
Commentary: Dr. Dirk Schindelbeck, essayist and cultural scientist, Freiburg
Musical performance: "Stilbruch", acoustic rock

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