Nassau County Museum of Art
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Exhibits: Posters of the Russian Revolution 1917-1921

Dates: Second Floor Galleries
Through May 8, 2011

In the stormy period that began with the 1917 October Revolution, poster art became a principal means of communicating the ideals of Communism to the largely illiterate peasantry of Russia. Graphic, inexpensively produced posters carried the Revolution’s message and served to capture the minds and souls of the masses. These vibrant posters, depicting the new collective means of production in mines, fields and factories, were designed and executed by some of the foremost Russian artists of the time, among them Dmitry Moor, El Lissitzky, and Viktor Deni. The works in Posters of the Russian Revolution 1917-1921 are on loan from The Arnold A. Saltzman Family Collection. The exhibition is on view at Nassau County Museum of Art through May 8, 2011.

The early posters of 1917-18 mirror the conflicts and concerns of the Revolutionary struggle: exploiters and exploited, the call to arms, the appeal for workers to unite, along with efforts to eliminate illiteracy and improve the status of women. With the outbreak of the Russian Civil War in 1918, following the Revolutionary period, posters turn their attention to new personalities and causes: foreign interventionists, anti-Communist White Guards, and the recruitment of more troops. With the end of the Russian Civil War in 1923, the focus turns to reconstruction, education, trade unions, illiteracy, help for the needy, and celebrations, especially the May Day celebration of labor and industry.

Posters of the Russian Revolution 1917-1921

Viktor Deni
Comrade Lenin Purging the Unclean from the Earth, 1920
Color Lithograph
The Arnold A. Saltzman Family Collection