Travel posters are often filled with busy images of the many sights that can be seen, the activities that can be enjoyed and the food and drink that can be savored at the advertised destination.
This mesmerizing and memorable travel poster by prominent poster artist A. M. Cassandre takes a markedly different approach, however. In promoting Venice, a city famous for its canals and gondolas, the artist depicts a lone gondolier as he leans into the task of pushing his gondola forward. Barely making a splash with his pole, he’s slowly passing a beautiful old building at the edge of the canal, no doubt one of many that a tourist can expect to see in Venice.
His image is reflected in the still water beneath him. The mist on the water in the background and the muted colors of the sky suggest that dawn is just breaking.
The mood of this poster –- one of profound serenity -- is this poster’s most remarkable feature. The poster projects a calmness and peacefulness that are strong enough to envelop even a casual viewer. The attraction is visceral, and the hope of ENIT, the Italian tourism board that distributed this poster, is that this poster's almost mystical aura will lure tourists to Venice.
With this famous poster, Cassandre set a high bar for any future poster artist who tries for a “mood piece” in designing a travel poster.
The name “A. M. Cassandre” is signed in the plate in the lower right corner of the poster.
A. M. Cassandre (nee Adolphe Jean-Marie Mouron), 1901-1968, was a graphic artist whose poster designs greatly influenced advertising art in the first half of the twentieth century. Born in the Ukraine to French parents, he studied art in Paris before going to work for a Parisian printing house where he achieved early success designing commercial posters. He subsequently formed an advertising agency serving a wide variety of clients during the 1930s and made a name for himself designing travel posters.
Cassandre is known not only for his innovative graphic designs but also for his work developing several new typeface styles. He was also a designer of sets and costumes for theaters and, in later life, returned to painting as his art form.
This magical poster by one of poster's great artist will enhance every collection.