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Auction History Result

2k023 GESAMTGASTSPIEL 36x50 Swiss opera poster 1917 Otto Baumberger art of the Biblical brothers!

Date Sold 12/13/2018
Sold For: Login or Register to see sold price.


An Original Vintage Paperbacked Swiss Opera Play Poster (measures 35 1/2" x 50 1/4" [90 x 128 cm]) (Learn More)

Gesamtgastspiel (literally translates to "Complete Guest Performance"), the 1917 Swiss opera production (of Kain & Abel and The Bee, a Biblical story about Cain and Abel from Genesis) featuring Austrian composer Felix Weingartner. This was a production by the Grand Duke of Darmstadt's theater group (from Darmstadt, Germany) that traveled to Zurich, St. Gallen, and Basel, Switzerland. Something really fascinating about this play is that there is a credit at the bottom for "Clemens v. Franckenstein", which of course sounds like a pseudonym, but actually it is a real person! Clemens Erwein Heinrich Karl Bonaventura Freiherr von und zu Franckenstein was a very successful German opera composer in Vienna, Austria, and later in Munich, Germany, and he lived from 1875 to 1942. Note that this poster features art by Otto Baumberger! Baumberger was considered ahead of his time in recognizing important aspects of consumer advertising. Without creating a style of his own, he sought the most appropriate way of conveying a message, and his original, inventive images led to a reduction that reached towards abstraction, as image and lettering elements gradually formed an increasingly striking synthesis. The diversity of Baumberger's work embodies the history of Swiss poster art in the first half of the twentieth century, showing the development from the painterly artist's poster to corporate design shaped by graphic art. In the case of this early 1917 poster, we are looking at a work in the style of Expressionism, an avantgarde movement developed through the experience of the horrors of World War I (WWI). The fratricide theme of Kain killing his brother is a horrific sign of the times.
Artist: Otto Baumberger
Important Added Info: Note that this poster has been paperbacked. What is paperbacking? This means the poster was backed onto a light paper backing (acid-free), that is similar in feel to that of the original poster (it means that the poster must be handled carefully, as the backing does not give it much added strength, but it is similar to having an unrestored poster, and yet it has been properly preserved). It is a similar process to linenbacking, except that most collectors use linenbacking for one-sheets and paperbacking for half-sheets, inserts, window cards.

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Overall Condition and Pre-Restoration Defects with Quality of Restoration: very good. Prior to paperbacking, the poster was never folded. It had some slight darkening and minor border wear. Overall, the poster was in very good condition prior to paperbacking. The poster was nicely backed with no excess paper around the edges, and it displays well! It appears the paperbacking was primarily done for conservation purposes and not for restoration purposes. At some point after it was backed, it acquired a 1/2" tear in the upper right border and a second tiny tear 12" below that in the right blank border (in the poster and the paper backing), and someone put small tape on the back of those areas.
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