Exhibition of Hubert Hilscher (1924 - 1999) posters in Warsaw
received from Mariusz Knorowski
Exhibition poster by Leszek Holdanowicz
See more posters from Hubert Hilscher on Pinterest.
See more links about Hubert Hilscher on Delicious.
25th June 2015 - 20th September 2015
Poster Museum at Wilanow
Stanislawa Kostki Potockiego 10/16, Warsaw, Poland
Hubert Hilscher's exhibition at the Poster Museum at Wilanów seems to be a natural consequence of a certain affinity which developed between this artist and our institution. Indeed, he belonged to a confined group of people who supported both the idea of the International Poster Biennale in Warsaw and the Museum itself, organically linked with this event. After both projects had been realised, he became our frequent, and often much demanded, collaborator. He designed posters to our exhibitions many a time. In the heroic period, when the Museum's identity was only fledging, he would offer some hearty advice, being a living proof of how important our institution was for the artistic milieu. Even more so, because the Museum had to satisfy high expectations back then, and it has continued to do so until now, treating this satisfaction as its honourable duty.
At the same time, Hubert Hilscher's work occupied a unique place on the map of the then graphic art. He absolutely deserved the title of "the authority", unanimously confirmed by opinions from his artistic peers. It was not only his versatile works in the field of widely understood artistic prints, an imposing artistic output, but also the function of the art manager in the magazine "Projekt" (today we would call him an "art director") which justified his rank.
Despite this, Hubert Hilschner kept a humble distance to the discipline which was his passion. He was characterized by deeply understood professionalism and self-restrained which would first make him respect a character of a given commission and the task placed before him. Following the principles of this genre of art, he did not impose his own vision domineeringly but would rather search for an easily digestible visual equivalent of a theme, sometimes giving it the shape of a graphic idiom.
After all, there are things and ideas - such as, for instance, contemporary music - which by their own nature will never yield to visualisation directly or react against a simple visual transcription. Then, all one can do is to tame the element of expression, coming from the outside like a somewhat self-imposing vision, and forge this vibrant, a-morphic matter into a visual harmony of a clear and readable composition. Owing to this, the composition can function as a poster or a piece of information, free from any personal fancy.
Hubert Hilschner faced such challenges aptly, which is proved, for instance, by his series of posters for the "Warsaw Autumn" Festival.
Further proof of his skill, actually incorporated in the universal history of the poster, is his series of circus posters. These realisations lack any utilitarian function whatsoever. Being purely decorative, they do not announce any concrete show, remaining a free variation on the phenomenon of "the last enclave of true art", as people would sometimes call the circus with no irony, where the impossible becomes possible and the other way round. These pieces do not only demonstrate the artist's masterly approach to a seemingly banal theme but, also, his fine sense of humour and the servile role of his works, expected to satiate the eye and entertain. No more than this.
His independent designs for various types of publications are another issue. Some of these works of his received awards many times. A dozen or so of his cover designs to the magazine "Projekt" should be treated as a certain whole. Peeping inside each issue of the magazine is also worthwhile as it helps one to form an opinion about the artistic line of this publication, which enjoyed unbelievable esteem both in Poland and abroad at that time.
The fact that the artist's work is recognisable means that each piece from his oeuvre bears his discreet, deeply camouflaged signature. If one wanted to search for a designate of the notion "high graphic culture", one can take today's exhibition as very convincing proof of the matter. Each Hubert Hilscher piece attracts our attention with its modest dignity and specific elegance, being somewhat of its author's afterimage who wanted to be an invisible man.