Object Posters

Bernhard, Breisgau-Perle
Bernhard, Lucian.
Breisgau-Perle, c. 1914

Birkhauser, Pkz (Button)
Birkhauser, Peter.
Pkz (Button), 1934

The term Sachplakat, or Object Poster, was coined in Germany to describe a new type of poster which featured a realistic depiction of the product and little else. Lucian Bernhard's revolutionary 1905 poster for Preister matches is considered the first of this type, and its utter simplicity became a hallmark of the emerging Plakatstil (Poster Style).

The craze for this poster type continued in Switzerland, where the passion for precision in printing and drawing technique was unsurpassed. In 1923 Otto Baumberger drew a tweed coat for PKZ with its label serving as the only text - which many mistook for a photograph.

Shortly after, the iconic beauty of the everyday object became the mission of a group of artists in Basel, who made the Sachplakat the leading Swiss style in the '40s and early '50s. Laced with humor and stunning visual impact, these posters represent the last great period of the lithographic poster, which high cost and long production cycles was soon to eliminate.

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Stoecklin, Valvo
Stoecklin, Niklaus.
Valvo, 1931

Leupin, Suchard
Leupin, Herbert.
Suchard, 1944

Birkhauser, Radio Paillard
Birkhauser, Peter.
Radio Paillard, 1945