Heritage Auctions is putting on another one of their Movie Poster Signature Auctions Nov. 29-30 in Dallas, Texas this week — and I’m pretty high on their lots from Italian master, Luigi Martinati (of the infamous BCM Studio – aka Ballester Capitani Martinati) — who created all the elegant manifestos below.
Giuliano Nistri grew up in the shadow of big brother poster artist, Enzo Nistri (in fact, I wrongly credited Dial M For Murder and a few other designs to Enzo in the past) — but let the record show that young Giuliano is more than capable of defending himself. The proof can be seen below in his terrific oeuvre of manifestos from the 1950s and 1960s, going from the classics to kitsch in one fell swoosh of his pen. (MoviePosterDB, EMP)
One of the great things about vintage movie posters is you come across actors and actresses that you never knew existed — for example, take British bombshell, Diana Dors. Considered by many to be England’s answer to Marilyn Monroe, Dors was boffo at the British box office — but her career across the pond never fully took flight (mainly due to an over-controlling first husband and other Hollywood politics, I’m sure). She passed away in 1984 at the age of 52.
Regardless, even if you haven’t seen any of her films, the posters and titles alone are entertaining — Blonde Sinner, The Unholy Wife, Tread Softly Stranger, and Passport to Shame, to name a few. And if Ms. Dors was good enough for the late great Richard Dawson (her second hubby, the kissy-kissy host of Family Feud and The Running Man), then she’s good enough for me!
Manfredo Acerbo, who signed his posters with just his first name, had a talent for design with his loose, sophisticated, painterly style. Certainly, there are other Italian poster artists with much higher profile credits on their résumé (namely, Ercole Brini), but Manfredo’s work is just as pretty — even if the films themselves were not.
In boxing, they say styles make fights. Well, you could say the same thing about movie posters (although most movie poster fans are lovers not fighters.)
But if there were a brawl to break out among two International movie poster artists — Italian stallion, Silvano (“Nano”) Campeggi, and Spanish designer, Jano (Francisco Fernández Zarza), would be an excellent battle. (MoviePosterDB)