Posters

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Posters have been a vital means of communication, and a familiar feature of our public spaces since the 19th century. Whether promoting products and services, exhibitions and performances, political causes or protests, they are compelling visual evidence of our social and cultural history.

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The V&A has been actively collecting posters on an international scale from the early 20th century to the present day. We now hold the most extensive collection in the UK, with more than 26,000 items, including examples by the masters of the medium – Chéret, Toulouse-Lautrec, Cassandre, McKnight Kauffer – and the work of anonymous activists.

Collection Highlights

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Colour screenprint poster advertising bands performing at the UFO Club, London, designed by Michael English, published by Osiris Visions Ltd, 1967, UK
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Colour lithograph poster advertising the Nord Express train from Paris to Riga, by Adolphe Mouron Cassandre, 1927, France
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Colour lithograph poster for the Underground Electric Railways Co. of London, Ltd., by Edward McKnight Kauffer, issued by Underground Electric Railways Co. of London, Ltd., 1930, London, England
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Colour lithograph poster for East Coast Resorts by L.N.E.R., by Tom Purvis, about 1925, UK
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Colour lithograph poster advertising La Loïe Fuller at the Folies-Bergère, by Jules Chéret, printed by Imprimerie Chaix, Ateliers Cherét, 1893, Paris, France
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Down with US imperialism, Down with Soviet revisionism, screenprint, by students from Xian University, 1967, China
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Jane Avril au Jardin de Paris, lithograph poster, by Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, 1893, Paris, France
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On vous intoxique!, screenprint, by Atelier Populaire, 1968, Paris, France
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Lithograph poster for Tropon powdered eggs, by Henry van de Velde, 1898, Belgium
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Keep Smiling. Guinness Is Good For You, lithograph poster, by John Gilroy, about 1939 – 45, UK
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Lithograph poster for the Berlin Zoologischer Garten, by Julius Klinger Germany, published by Hollerbaum & Schmidt, 1910, Berlin, Germany
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Men who mean business read the Financial Times every day, lithograph poster, designed by Abram Games, 1952, UK
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Job, poster, by Alphonse Mucha, 1898

Features

Background image: Colour screenprint poster advertising bands performing at the UFO Club, London, Michael English, 1967, UK. Museum no. E.38-1968. © Victoria and Albert Museum, London