Norman Wilkinson, R.I.

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Norman Wilkinson R.I. (British, 1878-1971) well known as a maritime artist, illustrator and poster designer for the London Midland Scottish Railway (LMS). He was born in Cambridge and studied at the Berkhamsted School of Art and the Southsea Schools of Art. Wilkinson had a long working relationship with the Illustrated London News and The Illustrated Mail. In 1906 he was elected President (R.I.) of The Royal Institute of Painters in watercolors, and was also a member of the Royal Institute of Oil Painters, the Royal Society of Marine Artists, and the Royal Scottish Society of Painters in Watercolors. He entered into the Royal Navy during World War I becoming a Naval Officer, his major contribution was to the new multi-colored art of camouflage called “Razzle-Dazzle”. Wilkinson is regarded as one of the finest marine artists of the 20th century and he continued to design posters and illustrate well into the 1950’s.

This Vintage Travel Poster was featured in our 2006 exhibition “The Art of Travel”. Please follow the link to our exhibition page to see the Catalog of the Exhibition and additional information.

Vintage Travel Posters

American, British & Canadian Railroad Posters

September 15 - October 14, 2006

Meibohm Fine Arts
is proud to offer these rare 1920-30's original vintage travel posters from our archives. The collection of 20 American, British and Canadian posters represents railway companies, a railway car manufacturer, resort posters and national park posters.

With the emergence of travel by train that began in the early 1830’s, until it’s rise in popularity in the later part of the 19th century, advertising mostly took the stance of using leaflets, handouts and broadsides. Around the 1880’s, Europe began using a new form of printing called lithography to promote travel even further. The use of this new medium influenced American advertising agencies and artists so much that they used it for the next 75 years. The use of bright and vivid color encouraged travel to faraway exotic places and new frontiers, while challenging people to use their imaginations.
Most travel posters featured dramatic landscapes, architecture, trains, and sometimes female travelers, while offering first-rate comfort and class. By the 1920’s and 30’s, posters took on an array of different artistic styles. Numerous artists were commissioned to design them, and it was often the hope of most illustration artists to obtain a career in this highly desired field. One artist was quoted as saying that first impressions were everything -“Few colors, vivid, attention-compelling; striking, well-disposed composition; short and smashing copy.” These he argued, “…are the attributes that make a poster successful.”

Few posters have survived, as they were often printed on cheaper paper and were intended to have a life of about three months. Railway advertising posters continued to thrive and were used through the 1950’s. As a record of art and history they are highly collectible and actively sought-after today.

• Poster dimensions are in inches, height precedes width.
• All works include conservation framing.
• Additional biographical information on artists and railways is available.
• All Posters are guaranteed original vintage prints.
• Condition Grades:
“A” condition: a poster in very fine condition, with no restoration. Colors are fresh. Poster is archivally, backed and very clean.
“B” condition: a poster in good condition, possibly showing some staining, or minor restoration, any restoration will be fully disclosed.
“C”condition: a poster in fair condition, folds, creases and restoration will be apparent, as well as any paper loss, any restoration will be fully disclosed.