Posters of the Soviet period

The State Museum of St. Petersburg has formed a unique collection of Soviet posters, numbering about 15,000 items. The collection covers the period from 1918, from the appearance of the first Soviet political posters, to present days.

The collection was based on items moved from the State Hermitage, the State Public Library, the Museum of Defense of Leningrad, a branch of the Central Museum of V.I.Lenin, as well as the results of the collection work of the museum’s scientists and large gifts, for example, the gift of collector and art critic G.S.Ginger.

Various poster genres are widely represented in the collection: political, military, industrial, agricultural, etc., as well as the works of creative associations: “ROSTA Satire Windows”, “TASS Windows”, “Battle Pencil”, “Baltic Spotlight”. The collection of posters of the “Battle Pencil” association is one of the most complete in our country.

The posters made by famous masters: V.V. Lebedev, D.S.Moor, M.M.Cheremnykh, V.N.Deni, the Kukryniks, V.V.Suryaninov and others are the real treasures of the collection. V.V.Lebedev's poster "Uncle Prov", made using the stencil technique, is a rare copy of the poster of the 1920s.

Posters created during the war of 1941-1945 comprise the largest collection about 4,000 items. The posters of the war years reflect the main events of the Great Patriotic War. The works of the Chief artist of the Political Administration of the Baltic Fleet S.S.Boim are of historical interest. With the accuracy of a documentary, he was able to show life in the besieged Leningrad. His poster "The blood of Leningraders calls for revenge" (1944) is an example of it.

Post-war posters cover a wide range of political topics. The theme of elections to various authorities is widely reflected in the Soviet poster. The work of V. V. Suryaninov "For the happiness of children" (1954) stands out among these posters.

A significant part of the collection form information and advertising posters. They were produced annually and were timed to holidays and memorable dates. A typical example of such a poster is the work by M.A. Gordon “Leningrad is 250 years old” (1957).

The posters of the 1980-1990s, the period of Perestroika, are characterized by an acute political focus on the fight against bureaucracy, bribery, and corruption. One example of a political poster of those years is the poster “Perestroika. Such people - off the road! ” (1988) by P.V.Serkin.

Over the past decade, museum was replenished with the gifts of famous St. Petersburg graphic artists and heirs of artists: J.V.Efimovsky, G.V.Covenchuk, V.M.Menshikov, Y.V.Trunev, V.A.Travin. In 2011, the museum received a gift from L.B.Mikhailov, director of the St.Petersburg Rock Opera Theater. It was over 80 theater posters of the famous St.Petersburg artist G.P.Korbut. These sheets have supplemented a special section of the collection devoted to spectacular advertising.

In 2019, the collection of theatrical posters was replenished with the gifts of the Honored Artist of the Russian Federation Georgy Nikolayevich Rashkov, which he created for the Leningrad theaters. These posters illustrate the pages of the theatrical life of Leningrad from 1984 to 1989, reflect the style of those years, performances relevant to that time based on the works of V.Shukshin, V.Rozov, N.Pavlova and other authors. The performances were on the stages of the Leningrad Academic Drama Theater named after A.S.Pushkin, as well as those that were part of the Lenconcert association - the “Young Theater” and the “Vremya Theater Studio”.
The presented artistically decorated sheets for the productions of the A.S.Pushkin Theatre are a rarity, since the theater mainly preferred the production of font posters.

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