The Daily Pic

07.09.13

An Ad Made for Poster-ity

The Daily Pic: At MoMA, Otto Baumberger's 1923 poster does justice to the glories of cloth.

This is a 1923 ad (for the coat, I assume), drawn by the great Swiss illustrator Otto Baumberger, and now in a MoMA show called "Artist's Choice: Trisha Donnelly". (Click to zoom in on the image). I'm not sure that artist-chosen shows are of that much curatorial or art-historical use, and anyway they've become a cliche. In a way, they revert to the reactionary notion of the "connoisseur's eye", now genuflecting to the hero-artist as was once done to savior-collectors. Still, by avoiding curatorial serieux, they manage to pull amazing things out of storage that might not otherwise find a reason to be seen – and Donnelly's choices are plum. Baumberger's stunning color litho, a full 50" high, shows his amazing skill in rendering fabrics, and speaks of a time when everyday textiles where a subject of true connoisseurship, because they didn't come cheap from Asia.

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