• Steven Heller

Advertising Dutch

The advertising universe may not be as infinite as the real universe, but everywhere never before seen stars all of a sudden shine. These are full-page illustrated vintage advertisements from a unnamed Dutch trade magazine published circa 1949 show how in the post World War II era the quality of design and typography, while not breaking new ground, were strikingly modern.

They came to The Daily Heller from Paul Morris is a graphic designer and blogger in Portland, OR. His column on mid-century album art, Cover Stories with Paul Morris, appears on JerryJazzMusician.com.

“There’s a mystery about the title of the magazine, as I found these pages loose,” he told me. “There are articles on ‘Industrial Production in Indonesia‘ and ‘The Rubber Problem: How to Obtain Reasonable Proportions?’ It’s in English and likely published in Europe because of the British spellings. The latest date mentioned in the text is 1949.”

One two-page spread for Borsumy-Concern Borneo Sumatra Trading Company featured a map of the corporate empire and an organization chart made up of stylishly lettered scrolls. These fine illustrations in a specialized trade magazine remind me how many outlets there were at this time for commercial artists, and the high artistic level they achieved. Long live these vintage advertisements.


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