This fascinating hand silk screened poster by acclaimed Cuban film poster designer Eduardo Munoz Bachs advertises a documentary by Mayra Vilasis titled, “El Cine Y Yo” which, translated, means, “The Cinema and I.” It’s about the work of Bachs himself, so in an odd twist, he has designed a poster featuring himself.
What is interesting is how he has chosen to portray himself, assuming that this is what he has done. He has drawn a character who looks as though he belongs in a Shakespearean play, judging from his costume. In Shakespeare’s plays there is often a character referred to as a “Shakespearean fool” who is a clever peasant who uses his wits to outdo others of higher social standing. Was Bachs seeing himself as this character? Or was he comparing himself to a court jester in Shakespearean plays? Or perhaps he was likening himself to Shakespeare. Bachs and Shakespeare shared the same long narrow face and nose of the fellow in this poster.
Bachs has drawn himself as standing on giant stilts, with a sharpened pencil as one stilt and a paint brush as the other. These were the principal tools of his trade, as he was a poster artist, cartoonist and painter, so it’s not surprising he would see himself as being propped up by them.
Eduardo Munoz Bachs (1937-2001) was born in Spain, but his family emigrated to Cuba in 1941. Though he had no formal art training, he began designing posters in 1960 for the Instituto Cubano del Arte e Industria Cinematograficos, the state-run organization formed after the revolution to promote Cuban films. During his lifetime he designed over 2000 posters for the ICAIC and is considered one of the great Cuban film poster artists of his era. His posters are typically characterized by his use of bright and bold colors and his wry sense of humor, both of which are evident in this poster. His designs often have a “cartoon” quality, and in fact he illustrated a cartoon strip as well as designed posters. He also illustrated books and painted.
Check out our other posters by this acclaimed Cuban poster designer. You'll be charmed by them all.