Vintage Posters vs. Contemporary Art

Vintage Posters vs. Contemporary Art

Every great work of art has two faces, one toward its own time and one toward the future, toward eternity ~Daniel Barenboim~

Any work of art is priceless. However, art ,too, has many varieties and each variety has its own fascinating past and a hopeful present. Take for instance vintage poster and contemporary art. Both are varied form of art and have their own niche appreciators. However, both are quite unlike each other.

Vintage poster as an art form has its roots in Paris, France. Jules Cheret is credited to have created the first color poster back in 1869. Later, other French artists too started creating posters and soon this art spread beyond Europe.

But what are vintage posters. The International Vintage Poster Dealers Association defines vintage poster as “A vintage poster is an original poster created for a commercial client, to be placed in the public view to promote a product or service; sporting or entertainment events; political or social issues, travel & transportation, etc. A vintage poster has been produced in the time limited to the original project.”

Thus, posters were originally created as a means of carrying promotional message to the common man. However, with the passage of time these posters became rare and ultimately are now referred as vintage posters.

Contemporary art, on the other hand has been in existence for a very short time. Contemporary art began to take shape in the late 20th century and the early 21st century, at a time when abstract expressionism had started fading. Artists took to new style of art such as Dadaism, wherein the artists tried to capture absurdity and unpredictability in their creations. The other styles included pop art wherein the artists used common images to depict abstract relationships; op art wherein the artists created visual effects such as afterimages and trompe-l’oeil using colors and the hugely popular minimalism wherein they tried to project an object as itself and strip its expressive content by using flat colors etc.

If we compare both vintage posters and contemporary art, then the latter definitely presents itself with more variety. However, the subjects covered by vintage posters are more common, in the sense, they relate to our every day life. For instance, you can get vintage poster on topics such as war and military, liquor and beverages, entertainment and travel.

Most of the images displayed in the vintage poster are such that a common man can easily relate to them. However, those who do not have a sound understanding may find contemporary art a little difficult to understand.

Thus, vintage posters and contemporary art are two very different forms of art. But as the saying goes ‘Beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder’ and so your preference is likely to be governed by your likes and dislikes.

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