Metlicovitz's image of Mercury riding an automobile "chariot" through the sky is one of the great images of Italian poster art. Huge in size, this grand poster simply overwhelms the viewer. The symbolism of Mercury bursting out of the darkness, having traded his wings for a stripped-down automobile, would have reminded turn-of-the-century viewers that a new era was dawning.
Art Nouveau typography underscores Metlicovitz's forward-looking vision. The text, consisting of hand-cut letters, is among the most beautiful seen in a poster of any country during this period.
Metlicovitz, an Italian of Serbian descent, came to Ricordi as a lithographer's trainee in 1891, and within a year became its technical director. He went on to become Ricordi's artistic director and most prolific posterist. The "Mostra" was designed in 1905, a year before his superior and mentor, Adolfo Hohenstein, left Ricordi for Germany.
This poster came from the estate of Metlicovitz himself and is in brilliant condition.