University of Brighton Design Archives

Collections • Collaboration • Research

A purple and yellow cinema poster for a Satyajit Ray film called 'The Chess Players' on at The Academy Cinema One, Oxford Street (no date). Graphic design by Peter Strausfield. One of three posters donated to the University of Brighton Design Archives.

Cinema posters donation

A recent gift to the University of Brighton Design Archives from Robin Plummer, Dean of the Faculty 1975-1989, comprises three signed posters by the graphic designer Peter Strausfeld.

Peter Strausfeld (1910-1980) taught graphic design at Brighton College of Art between 1959 and 1980. Throughout this time he continued to design posters for the Academy Cinema, Oxford Street, London, a role he had fulfilled since 1947.

Strausfeld had met George Hoellering, the Austrian film producer, when both were interned on the Isle of Man in the first few years of the Second World War. Having fled Nazi occupation they, like many of their peers, were temporarily considered enemy aliens. Together they collaborated on the internment camp magazine and when Hoellering established the independent Academy Cinema in 1947, he asked Strausfeld to design its posters.

Stausfeld’s dramatic linocuts, illustrating many of the most significant films of world cinema in the post-war years, became distinctive graphic punctuations in the city landscape. Their formal power and single colour backgrounds make them immediately recognisable.

These posters, signed by the designer, are a recent gift to the Design Archives from Robin Plummer, Dean of the Faculty 1975-1989.

For further information on Strausfield see the entry by Dr Frank Gray in the 150th anniversary publication Art & Design at Brighton 1859-2009 edited by Philippa Lyon and Professor Jonathan Woodham.

The Brighton School of Art Archive is one of eighteen collections housed in the Faculty of Arts.

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Sirpa Kutilainen • July 2, 2009

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