Everyone loves posters! Let's take a brief look at what Porsche was up to in the 1950s and early 1960s. The first designs (in this case, dealership posters) were very stylish and simple in their execution. Take a look at the first poster – designed by the artist Erich Strenger, it is typical of Porsche’s publicity material of the time. All very stylised, all very Bauhaus…
But come the later 1950s, and everything changed with the arrival on the scene of Walter Gotschke’s loose style – you can imagine him standing at arm’s length from the canvas, paint brush a blur of colour. Gotschke was born in what is now the Czech Republic in 1912, but went on to work in Stuttgart in 1938. He was entirely self-taught, becoming a student of architecture before turning to painting full time later in life. Sadly he contracted an eye disease in old age and went blind. He passed away in 2000.
His flamboyant style undoubtedly had an influence on other artists, notably Dexter Brown, whose work was frequently used in the 1970s to illustrate race posters and programmes, such as the cover of the 1970 Brands Hatch 1000km shown here. Brown’s work was always more abstract than that of Gotschke, but the similarities are plain to see.
Both artists captured the speed, the excitement and the colour of motor racing in a way that few others could. Small wonder their work is so popular with collectors…
They are in stark contrast to the style of the other two posters from the 1970s (World Championship and Interserie) shown here. Guess what? They were both also designed by Erich Strenger. Clearly his style had evolved over the decades. Which style do you prefer?
Click on each for a larger image.