Original Vintage Posters &
Artworks by Le Corbusier
A classy presentation of Original Vintage Posters & the worldwide largest selection of lithographs and engravings by Le Corbusier – that’s PLACART. We can also offer unique works by LC.
Looking forward to your visit
Tomas Rabara | PLACART
Art! Commerce! Value paper!
Having become popular in Paris at the end of the 19th century, advertising posters soon after also seduced the passers-by in Switzerland with their bright colors and captivating compositons – a new form of art was born.
Each of the posters available at Placart is one of the rare copies of the respective circulation that has survived to this day. The great majority of the posters went missing as they were hung up in the streets. (Picture: Werdmühleplatz Zürich, 1913; source: Baugeschichtliches Archiv Stadt Zürich)
Le Corbusier’s essence cannot be caught without seeing also the painter in him – the art of modernism is his foundation. It is what he dedicates himself to every morning over decades. His development as an architect follows the one that he goes through as an artist.
Original poster by Erik Nitsche, advertising a show on General Dynamics’ achievements held 1961 at the Rockefeller Plaza. Pictured is an utopian proposition by the Parisian aeronaut Etienne Gaspard Robertson, La Minerve (1804). The balloon included accommodations for 60 people, promenades, a theatre, a clinic, a gym... The idea was that scientists spend several months on board to explore the applications of flight. It remained a proposition.
No idea which aircraft is shown below to illustrate the tremendous progress; seems not to be a Fighting Falcon F-16. Anyone?
Founded 1952, General Dynamics hired Nitsche as Art Director – a Swiss who emigrated 1934 to the USA where he evolved into a very versatile graphic designer whose work became exemplary modernist.
General Dynamics for its part focused on aerodynamics, aerospace, electronics – and nuclear power. So here the company had a problem: Only a few years after Hiroshima and Nagasaki it wasn’t exactly the simplest thing to explore nuclear energy and not to be suspected of developing weapons of mass destruction.
The International Conference on the Peaceful Uses of Atomic Energy 1955 in Geneva was a great opportunity to be seen as a provider of peaceful technology. The guys in charge chose Erik Nitsche to communicate this message: The first series entitled “Atoms for Peace” consisted of eleven posters. A fourth series of six small posters (ca. 90x40 cm each – this one I sold recently, three others are available) was printed on the occasion of the exhibition in New York.
Original Vintage Poster issued 1979 by the ETH Zurich on the occasion of its exhibition on Mies van der Rohe's architectural drawings. Pictured is the floor plan of his Pavilion that Germany used for the official opening of its section at the International Exposition 1929 in Barcelona.
The print run of the posters issued by the Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule Zürich (or rather its department GTA – Institut für Geschichte und Theorie der Architektur) to promote their exhibitions was very small. According to the at that time responsible employee rather 50 then 100.
Letterpress, 90x30 cm, anonymous designer, recently sold
"Parallelism is, as I employ it, either universally valid – and then my work has universal meaning – or I was wrong, and then my art is nothing but delusion." — Ferdinand Hodler
And what does this quote have to do with Otto Baumberger's poster promoting "Tell" shoes? Well, Hodler's view (as well as his pride and self-confidence) had a lasting influence on a lot other (younger) Swiss artists. His impact went even further as it was thank to him that Modern Art started to prevail against historicism and allegories in Switzerland – this cleared the way for, amongst other artists, Baumberger, Cardinaux, Stiefel...
"Marque Tell Shoes", lithograph, 1924, 128x89,5 cm – rare, available in the gallery
Bye-bye — soon at his new place: A rare and hardly ever seen early typographic poster by Mihaly Biro promoting cigarette paper – created in Vienna for the Austrian market after Biro had to flew Hungary 1919 following the collapse of the short lived Hungarian Communist Republic. I don’t know much about Austrian Posters, but this design must have been very unusual for the eyes of the passers-by in 20s Vienna... Lithograph, ca. 1920, printer unknown, 125x92 cm, sold
An exemplar from the first edition of LCs Modulor at his new home — published 1956 by good old Corbu himself and printed by Fernand Mourlot after a collage that LC created 1950.
For the print LC added the following call: "Ami du Modulor, cherche par toi-même, invente, découvre… Apporte tes inventions, elles seront utiles. Merci, ami".
The print run can no longer be determined – probably 200, maybe 300, at the most. If you are wondering now why the hell there are that many out there today: 1962 Heidi Weber published, with LC’s consent, a second edition, followed by at least four more after his death 1965 (the editions of the Fondation LC not counted).