8.28.15 / Bert And Harry On Tap
From 1955 through 1960, the Piels brewery (in the East New York section of Brooklyn) employed the Young & Rubicam ad agency to create new commercials for their beer, which was competing with national brands. Animated by the New York wing of UPA, the agency devised Bert and Harry, the fictitious Piel brothers and pitchmen for the tasty brew. Their voices were brilliantly provided by the hysterically and dryly funny Bob & Ray.
These commercials were so entertaining that, even as a nondrinking-age scamp, I couldn’t wait for the next installment. And the beer was good too. For more of Bert & Harry listen to Sara Fishko’s Fishko Files.
Below are some of the ancillaries that told beer-drinking customers just where Piels sat in their barroom lives.
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is the co-founder and the co-chair of the MFA Designer as Author program at the School of Visual Arts. He writes the Visuals column for the New York Times Book Review and the Graphic Content blog for T-Style. He is the author, coauthor, and/or editor of more than 120 books on design and popular culture, including the recent book Born Modern: The Life and Design of Alvin Lustig (Chronicle).