Above: Czech poster for Once Upon a Time in the West (Sergio Leone, Italy, 1968).
As I’m sure I’ve said before, the world of Czech movie posters is never less than an embarrassment of riches. I keep discovering new artists that I was never aware of previously, all with an impressive body of work behind them.
The other day, as I was looking through the new acquisitions of my favorite poster shop, Posteritati
, I came across this striking poster for Once Upon a Time in the West
: a fascinating combination of bold color, eccentric collage, pop art elements and unusual typography. I wasn’t aware of the name of Stanislav Vajce before that but a quick search on the store's website and elsewhere revealed a wild array of some of the most exciting and inventive Czech posters I have seen in a while.
As with so many of the Czech poster artists I've covered, Vajce is a fine artist who seems to have dabbled in movie poster design for just a few years during the golden age of Czech posters: the late 60s and early 70s. Born in 1935, Vajce, who has lived in Germany since the late 80s, recently had an exhibition of his painting
in his home town of Klatovy in the Czech Republic. Beyond that, I haven’t been able to find out much more about him, so I’ll let his posters speak for themselves. All of them use photographic collage mixed with near abstract elements and a smorgasbord of typography to arresting effect.
Above: Czech poster for Le bonheur (Agnès Varda, France, 1965).
Above: Czech poster for Naked Under Leather a.k.a. Girl on a Motorcycle (Jack Cardiff, UK, 1968).
Above: Czech poster for The Sicilian Clan (Henri Verneuil, France, 1969).
Above: Czech poster for Barefoot in the Park (Gene Saks, USA, 1967).
Above: Czech poster for Each Evening at Eleven (Samson Samsonov, USSR, 1969).
Above: Czech poster for The Last Night of Childhood (Savel Stiopul, Romania, 1969).
Above: Czech poster for Fathom (Leslie H. Martinson, UK, 1967).
Above: Czech poster for Woman in the Dunes (Hiroshi Teshigahara, Japan, 1964).
Above: Czech poster for Zita (Robert Enrico, France, 1968).
Above: Czech poster for The Lawyer (Sidney J. Furie, USA, 1970).
Above: Czech poster for Take Care of Susi! (Klaus Gendries, East Germany, 1968)
Above: Czech poster for Love and Sometimes a Curse (Antun Vrdoljak, Yugoslavia, 1969).
Above: Czech poster for Troubleshooters (Georges Lautner, France, 1971).
Above: Czech poster for Ten Thousand Days (Ferenc Kósa, Hungary, 1967).
Above: Czech poster for Faithful for Nothing (György Palásthy, Hungary, 1966).
Above: Czech poster for The Ambush (Živojin Pavlovič, 1969, Yugoslavia)
Posters courtesy of Posteritati, Terry Posters and KinoArt.net.