International Poster Exhibition Opens Sept. 11 at Colorado State

Note to Editors: Color slides of posters featured in the 10th Colorado International Invitational Poster Exhibition and from honor laureate Vladimir Chaika are available by calling Carrie Schafer in the Public Relations Office, (970) 491-6432.

More than 400 posters from artists worldwide will be showcased at Colorado State University, home to the only international poster exhibition held in the United States.

The 10th Colorado International Invitational Poster Exhibition, which opens on campus Sept. 11, features posters by 120 graphic artists representing 34 countries. Much of the work featured in the exhibition offers global viewpoints of the political, social and cultural issues that shape contemporary society.

Leading the parade of posters is honor laureate Vladimir Chaika, a world-renowned designer who left his position as an official Moscow designer to work independently. Chaika, who believes his challenge as an artist is to make meaningful images in a changing Russian society, was one of three gold medal winners for his poster, "For Rent," at the ninth biennial exhibition in 1995. (See attached background information on Chaika.)

Posters from invited artists will fill the Clara Hatton and Curfman galleries at Colorado State through Oct. 24. Posters by the honor laureate, exhibition juror, exhibition directors and high-school students from the Northern Front Range will hang in the Fort Collins Lincoln Center, 417 W. Magnolia St. This exhibition opens with a presentation by the laureate and a reception 5-7 p.m. Sept. 11. The exhibition is free to the public and will remain open 8:30 a.m.-4 p.m. weekdays and 1-4 p.m. Saturdays through Oct. 24.

A symposium featuring presentations by Chaika and other artists and curators will run 1-4 p.m. Sept. 12 in the Lory Student Center East Ballroom on campus. Making presentations will be Roy Johnston, curator of the Irish satellite exhibit; Dana Bartelt, curator for the Israeli/Palestinian satellite exhibit; James Victore, independent designer and professor of graphic design at the School of Visual Arts in New York; and Joel Rutstein, collection development officer for the Morgan Library at Colorado State.

The exhibition officially opens with a reception and poster sale 7-9 p.m. Sept. 12 at the Visual Arts Building at Colorado State. During that time, exhibition winners will be announced. The poster sale will take place in the Hatton and Curfman galleries, located in the Visual Arts Building and Lory Student Center, respectively. Copies of exhibition posters will be available; cost is $30 for students and $40 for non-students. Organizers said the number of posters will be limited. Catalogs also will be available for purchase.

The poster exhibition was first organized in 1979 by a group of Colorado State art professors and Fort Collins designers, including Phil Risbeck, Shelton Stanfill, Bob Coonts, Miriam Harris and John Sorbie. This year’s exhibition is coordinated by Linny Frickman, art professor and director of the Hatton Gallery. Exhibition co-directors include graphic art Professor John Gravdahl as well as Risbeck and Coonts.

Patterned after the biennial poster exhibition in Warsaw, the show aims to bring to an American audience the work of selected artists representing all parts of the globe. Organizers said the exhibition provides a rare opportunity for poster art enthusiasts, graphic designers and members of the public to meet the artists, exchange ideas about graphic design and purchase art work.

"What makes this event so unique is its refreshing mix of both established figures in the design field and up-and-coming young artists whose work is attracting critical acclaim in the professional design community," said Risbeck, chairman of Colorado State’s art department. "This event continues to grow and is one of the highlights among poster artists worldwide."

Because of its international scope, the exhibition often mirrors political and social issues. For example, in the ninth biennial event in 1995, artists addressed concern over the spread of AIDS, the survival of endangered species and racism. During the seventh biennial event in 1991, a number of works reflected the fall of the Soviet Union and political shifts in Eastern Europe. This year’s exhibition continues the tradition of concern through artists’ exploration of ecology, racism, war in Bosnia and political and religious tensions in the Middle East.

"In bringing together posters of many countries, we have a rare opportunity to see global concerns from the designer’s own perspective," said Linny Frickman. "This exhibition offers not only a glimpse into the direction of contemporary poster design but also into the very issues that shape our world."

Satellite poster shows at Colorado State and at locations in Fort Collins, Loveland and Greeley also will take place as part of the international exhibition. A complete schedule is as follows:

  • The One West Contemporary Art Center in Fort Collins will host an exhibition of posters, titled "The 100 Best Posters from Europe and the United States: 1945-1990." Curated by prominent designers Allan Weill, Milton Glaser and Yusaku Kamekura, the exhibit looks at exemplary poster designs spanning the past 45 years. The show is open Aug. 29-Nov. 1 in the main gallery. Gallery hours are 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. A reception will be held Aug. 29 from 7-9 p.m. to kick off the exhibition.
  • The Fort Collins Museum will feature an exhibition of 25 Russian posters marking the 50th anniversary of the end of World War II. The exhibition was organized by eminent Moscow graphic arts historian Sergei Serov, who also is editor of the Moscow graphic design periodical GREATIS and director of the Golden Bee International Poster Biennial in Moscow. The show runs from Sept. 2-Oct. 23. Hours are 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday and noon-5 p.m. Sunday.
  • An exhibition of posters, titled "UN Rights: A Collection of Posters by African Artist Chaz Maviyane-Davies," runs Sept. 2- Oct. 31 at the Loveland Museum/Gallery, 503 N. Lincoln Ave. Hours are 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday; 10 a.m.-9 p.m. Thursday; 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday; and noon-4 p.m. Sunday.
  • The Direction Gallery in the Visual Arts Building will host "Both Sides of Peace: Israeli-Palestinian Political Posters," an exhibition highlighting work from Palestinian and Israeli graphic artists that speaks to the peace process in the Middle East. The exhibition was organized by the City Gallery of Contemporary Art, with the support of the Raleigh, N.C., chapter of the American Institute of Graphic Art. The exhibition runs Sept. 11-Oct. 24. The gallery is open 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.
  • The Glass Gallery in the Visual Arts building will feature a collection of posters created since 1969 that illustrates both sides of the struggle in Northern Ireland. This collection is on loan from the Linenhall Library in Ulster. The exhibition runs Sept. 11-Oct. 24. The gallery is open 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.
  • The University of Northern Colorado in Greeley will host "American Designers," an exhibition of more than 80 posters by American artists. The exhibition will be held in the Mariani Gallery in Guggenheim Hall and runs Sept. 12-Oct. 3. An opening reception is planned Sept. 12 from 5-9 p.m. For more information, call (970) 351-2143.

The poster exhibition is presented by Colorado State, the Fort Collins Lincoln Center, Poudre School District, the Fort Collins Chamber of Commerce and the Fort Collins Convention and Visitors Bureau. Financial sponsors include Colorado State’s department of art, the Colorado Council on the Arts, Fort Fund from the city of Fort Collins, the Elizabeth Firestone Graham Foundation and many private donors.