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Polish Posters in Main

January 25, 2017


On Friday, January 27 Plakat Polski: Selections from The Frank Fox Polish Poster Collection and the Kenneth F. Lewalski Polish Posters Collection will open with a reception from 4-6PM in the Rincliffe Gallery and Anthony J. Drexel Picture Gallery, located on the third floor of Main Building at 3141 Chestnut Street. Housed in our Graphic Design program, together these collections represent one of the largest collections of Soviet-era Polish posters in an institution in the United States. Curated by Graphic Design Professor Mark Willie, this exhibition creatively and cunningly expresses social and political commentary in Soviet-dominated Poland.

Polish poster art and design emerged at the end of World War II and reached its height during the Cold War era. The explosion of creativity expressed through the Polish school of poster design has had a lasting and significant impact on the history of 20th century graphic design. The artists and designers who belonged to the Polish school flourished from 1945 to 1989. The allusions and metaphors in many of the posters they created for film, theater, opera, the Polish circus and music often made implicit statements on the totalitarian state. Sly and ironic, many Polish posters passed through the official state censors to be displayed on the streets of Warsaw, Krakow and other cities across Poland.            

The Rincliffe Gallery is open from 8 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. The Gallery is free and open to the public. The Frank Fox Collection, donated to Drexel University in 2007, contains approximately 2,500 posters that range in date from the 1930’s through the 1990’s. The Kenneth F. Lewalski Collection of 140 posters was donated in 2009.

For more information, contact Lynn Clouser, Assistant Director of The Drexel Collection, at 215.895.2414 or