Poster collections are a fine way of exploring a broad cross-section of culture, especially when they range across the ethos and aesthetic of several eras. The National Gallery of Victoria has been one of Australia's primary art institutions ever since it was founded in 1861. 'Some Posters' finds the NGV engaging with the art and design of the century that followed, with a particular focus on the period 1963 to 1985. This was the time of the first blockbuster art shows, including retrospectives on Rodin, the surrealist movement and a big exhibition on Scandinavian design at the tail-end of the 1960s.
For every event and show, the NGV drew on a coterie of innovation designers to showcase the works on display, using a combination of the graphic language of the subject matter and the fashions of the age. Screenprints, collages, hand lettering and traditional lithographs feature prominently in this survey of what was originally considered ephemeral and rarely kept.
Co-edited by the book designer Stuart Geddes and the NGV's Megan Patty, 'Some Posters' is being launched at the upcoming Melbourne Art Book Fair (running 29 April – 1 May). The second year of this new event, the ABF features a host of small presses, young designers, innovative publishing houses, dealers, galleries and artists, all of whom remain committed to the role of design and print within the arts. A variety of art, music and food will also be on hand, as well as some of the original posters from the book.