It is hard to find better advertising than the "object posters" created in Basel in the '40s and '50s by Donald Brun, Herbert Leupin, Niklaus Stoecklin and Peter Birkhauser. Brun's poster for the successful Czech shoe manufacturer is one of the most playful posters of its genre.
The object poster was especially suited to lithography, a printing technique of such brilliant color and richness of texture that it could make objects look real. The Swiss had a passion for this style, perhaps because of their love of precision, but also because it could be understood by everyone--not a simple task in a country with four national languages. The object poster died in the late '50s as lithography gave way to lower-quality offset printing and photographic posters.
Like most of Brun's work, Bata combines gentle humor with breathtaking graphic skill. It reveals the artist's uncanny ability to focus on one irresistible image that could be absorbed in a second and remembered for a lifetime. Along with Herbert Leupin, Brun should be considered a successor to Leonetto Cappiello, the father of modern advertising, who specialized in product posters--considered by many to be the most challenging poster assignment.
Brun studied and worked in Basel his entire career (he is almost 90 today). Many of his posters garnered Swiss Poster of the Year awards.