Tuesday, 4 December 2007


I went to see the Weapons of Mass Communication exhibition at the Imperial War Museum last Friday. It was a bit curious, firstly I hadn't been to the IWM before and arriving there in the dark under the rain was quite surprising. I'm not a big war fan, and walking into this great hall full of rockets, cannons, and war aircrafts seemed a bit surreal to me.

I liked the exhibition a lot and thought it was really interesting, it gives a really good sense of the different design and communication strategies used by different countries. It's also fascinating to notice that the World Wars last century generalised outdoor advertising in a way nothing else could have (well, I guess we'll never know but it certainly seems that way). Some of them were beautiful for their design, and a lot were just chilling, given the intended idea in a lot of cases was to make the viwer feel guily or obligated to participate in the war effort (by signing up or giving money). It makes you seriously think about what it must be like to live in a country at war (actually the whole museum does), I was looking at the posters about the Spanish Civil War and thinking about my grandfather who lived through it. Incidentally, the CNT Poster was one of my favourite ones, it's visible on the microsite here.

The funniest and pretty scary mention for me was in the section of product advertising: a French poster advertising a chocolate drink powder depicting a tiger at the witness stand of a tribunal with Petain's head and holding the chocolate box high in his paw... Really weird...

1 comment:

Klaas van der Horst said...

Willem; I browsed through your whole blog this morning. Since I didnt hear anything since you started it I didnt think you keep it up to date very often. I think you're doing a great job!!! I'm surprised that there are few comments but than again it's too good to criticize I think.
Keep up the good work and pick your correpondents strategically!!