The Art of the Literary Poster: Works from the Leonard A. Lauder Collection


03.07.2024 - 06.14.2024

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During the 1890s, a new type of poster emerged in the United States, one that more closely resembled a work of art than an advertisement. Thanks to recent advancements in printing techniques, artists could create colorful, inventive compositions that seamlessly integrated text and images. Recognizing the broad appeal of this novel art form, the publishing industry began commissioning sophisticated placards to advertise magazines, journals, books, and other types of literature. Though short-lived, the so-called literary poster had a lasting impact on illustration, graphic design, and marketing in the United States.

This exhibition will present more than 40 highlights from The Met’s outstanding collection of literary posters, developed over four decades through the vision and support of Leonard A. Lauder. With a focus on innovations in style and technique, it will feature works by the leading American poster artists of the day, including Will H. Bradley, Joseph Christian Leyendecker, Edward Penfield, and Ethel Reed.

Accompanied by a catalogue.

This publication has been made possible by a generous grant from Leonard A. Lauder.