Glimpses from around the world 1905 -1999

Curated by Mary V. Mullin and Hannah Byles*

A selection of posters from the Poster Collection of Mary V. Mullin, AUB Honorary Fellow of 2006.

Mary V. Mullin is Chairman of the Sir Misha Black Awards Committee for Distinguished Services to Design Education, Trustee of the Robin and Lucienne Day Foundation, other Trusts and Regional Adviser to the World Design Organisation.  She has served on numerous professional bodies including, as Secretary-General of the International Council of Graphic Design for fourteen years, Vice President of the International Council of Societies of Industrial Design, Founder Member of the Crafts Council of Ireland and National Chairman of DIA.  She ran her own consultancy in design and special event management in London from 1981 to 1998.  Clients included the Conran Foundation’s Boilerhouse Project at the precursor of the Design Museum.  In 2017 she was awarded the Bi-Centennial Medal of the RSA for ‘Encouraging and Promoting Design across Education and Industry’.

The exhibition shows posters from the eclectic collection acquired in the course of Mary Mullin’s career. They contrast a wide variety of styles from countries as far apart as Japan and Ireland, Uruguay and Sweden and date from 1905 to 1999. The origins are entirely serendipitous and there never was an intention to form ‘a collection’ as such. The posters were presented, gifted, inherited, donated and acquired. As a result, there is no particular theme or subject matter, no geographic grouping or medium emphasis. They come in many styles formats and languages.

The striking variety of posters reflects many aspects of social, political and cultural change throughout the twentieth century.  Some were for public display –cinemas, theatre, opera,  ballet, exhibitions, festivals, events. Others were created for competitions or peer approval. They showcase many different graphic and print styles.  Cultural nuances are captured in the interpretation of universal themes. The exhibition informs, inspires and provokes the viewer and reminds that,  as social media today imitates, posters essence succinct storytelling and the art of communication in its most immediate and universal form.

*Please note that our Posters: The Original Social Media? Glimpses From Around the World 1905-1999 exhibition is being postponed until further notice. Sorry for any inconvenience caused. New dates will be announced in due course.