New York—Swann Galleries’s biannual offering of Vintage Posters on Thursday, February 13 presents a banquet of designs, ranging from Art Nouveau works of the late-nineteenth century to Puerto Rican graphic design from the 1960s to mid-2010s. The sale includes premier examples of sporting posters, cycling advertisements, as well as ski and winter destination images.
Leading the sale is a collection of over 350 Puerto Rican posters by a veritable who’s who of Puerto Rico’s most renowned painters, designers and graphic artists. Showcasing works by Rafael Tufiño, Lorenzo Homar, José Rosa, Analida Burgos, and Antonio Matorell among a bevy of others, the collection was amassed by a studio assistant of Tufiño, Homar and Rosa in the 1970s and features posters dedicated to a number of subjects, and a spectrum of typographic, geometric and figurative styles. The offering is expected to bring $20,000 to $30,000.
Following up on the recent of Sergio Trujillo Magnenat’s recent market debut with posters for the first Bolivarian Games in 1938, the house is poised to offer a run of posters for various Latin American sporting events, including Magnenat’s Bolivarian Games design featuring a basketball player ($2,500-3,500). Additional highlights include colorful Greco-inspired images for the 1935 and 1946 Juegos Deportivos Centroamericanos ($800-1,200, each); and advertisements for the 1948 World Series of Amateur Baseball in Managua, Nicaragua by Jorge Ampié, as well as an ad for the 1950 games ($800-1,200, each).
A strong showing of Art Nouveau posters includes advertisements for cycling, and standout works by the genre’s master, Alphonse Mucha. Bicycle images feature Orient Cycles / Lead the Leaders, circa 1895, by Edward Penfield, a rare large poster for the artist, available at $8,000 to $12,000; Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec’s Cycle Michael, 1896, the first of two posters designed for the British cycling company Simpson, expected to bring $7,000 to $10,000; and Adrien Barrère’s A, Brossard / Le “3 Vitesses” / l’Idéal du Touriste, 1903, estimated at $3,000 to $4,000. Mucha designs include Cycles Perfecta, 1897, and The Flowers, a group of three decorative panels, 1898, both available at $15,000 to $20,000. Also by Mucha are two variations of his highly popular image for Job rolling papers in purple and lavender—both are estimated at $12,000 to $18,000 apiece.
Additional Art Nouveau posters of note include Evelyn Rumsey Cary’s Pan – American Exposition / Niagara, 1901—an American Art Nouveau work based on Cary’s painting Spirit of Niagara—offered at $7,000 to $10,000. Arnost Hofbauer’s II. Vystava Spolku "Manes" / Topicuv Salon, 1898, of which only one other copy found at auction in the last 20 years, carries an estimate of $5,000 to $7,000, and Georges de Feure’s Le Journal des Ventes, 1898, scarce with text, is present at $4,000 to $6,000.
Ski and winter destination posters abound with Emil Cardinaux’s snowy advertisement Winter in der Schweiz, 1921, heading the offering at $12,000 to $18,000. Dwight Clark Shepler’s sleek design for travel to Sun Valley, Idaho via the Union Pacific Railroad is present at $8,000 to $12,000, as well as his image for travel to the ski destination via the Chicago and North Western Line, at $4,000 to $6,000. Sascha Maurer is available with Flexible Flyer Splitkein / Smuggler’s Notch, circa 1935, at $2,000 to $3,000.
Exhibition opening in New York City February 8. The complete catalogue and bidding information is available at swanngalleries.com and on the Swann Galleries App.
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About Swann Auction Galleries
Swann Auction Galleries is a third-generation family business as well as the world’s largest auction house for works on paper. In the last 75 years, Swann has repeatedly revolutionized the trade with such innovations as the first U.S. auction house dedicated to photographs and the world’s only department of African-American Fine Art. More than 30 auctions and previews are held annually in Swann Galleries’ two-floor exhibition space in Midtown Manhattan, and online worldwide. Visit swanngalleries.com for more information.