HOHENSTEIN, Adolfo // Esposizione d'igiene... Napoli, Aprile-Ottobre, 1900.
Original poster designed 1900, this commemorative print by G. Ricordi & Cie., circa 1914. A vivid lithograph (27 x 13.5 cm.), printed on well-coated stock, with wide margins and shimmering gilt. Crease to upper right margin and short edge-tear to bottom right; neither affecting print. Preserved in archival mat and set within complementary gilt frame.
Originally choosing to develop in-house lithographic capacities in the 1870s, in order to render its sheet music business more profitable, the Milanese publishing firm of G. Ricordi would soon become the leading Italian poster designer, creating iconic campaigns for companies such as Campari and Corriere della Sera. Perhaps the most significant event in this development was the ascent of Russian-born, Austrian-raised, Adolfo Hohenstein to Art Director at the firm; Hohenstein eventually being recognized as the master of the Italian form of Art Nouveau (Stile Liberty). Here we find Hohenstein producing an incredibly seductive, Eden-like design for the 1900 Hygiene Exposition in Naples, which measured in its original form an astounding 220 x 115 cm.
Recognizing the ephemerality of its poster output, Ricordi produced a commemorative portfolio of 70 of its most significant poster designs (1895-1914) in reduced size, not unlike Maîtres de l'affiches.