Swiss poster design enjoys an outstanding reputation internationally and has played a key role in the history of the poster around the world.
The development of lithography laid the foundations for producing colourful, artistic posters cheaply.
Tourism came to Switzerland towards the end of the 19th century. The poster emerged as the ideal medium to convey the country’s appeal as a holiday destination.
Influenced by the theories of the Bauhaus, typography and Concrete Art defined the posters of the Zurich School in the 1920s and 1930s.
The Basel School became especially famous for its Object Posters in the period between 1920 and 1950. These depicted objects in a simplified but realistic style together with slogans that were short and to the point.
Elements of the Zurich and Basel Schools came together in the International Style. Favouring an orderly and unified structure, it led Swiss poster art to international acclaim.
Amid the Postmodernism of the 1970s and 1980s, the International Style gave way to new ideas, partly due to new technological advances such as phototypesetting.
The National Library’s poster collection
Last modification 07.12.2018
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