Think back to when advertisements bore images of icons like Rosie the Riveter or Uncle Sam, energizing the masses with their bold demeanors and emphatic statements to mobilize a particular movement. These posters and ideas set the stage for the social and political movements of their time; they made a lasting impression in the minds of the American public, so much so that they continue to remain two of the most prominent and recognizable images to this day.
In an attempt to recreate the same vigor and appeal of World War Two posters, old images of international cooperation, posters from the environmental movement in the 1960s and 1970s, the Green Patriot Posters project was started; an organization that, since its inception in 2008, has encouraged designers to explore poster design as a medium for visual mass-communication. The main premise behind Green Patriot Posters is to serve as a communications campaign centered on posters that encourage all U.S. citizens to build a sustainable economy. Having amassed immense notoriety throughout the country with the project’s published book of collected poster designs, and showcasing small collections of the posters at an array of museums, Design Museum Boston has created its first national touring exhibition, which includes hundreds of unique posters displayed in print and digitally in the gallery at 315 on A.
Working closely with co-editor of the project’s book, Edward Morris, Design Museum Boston has conceived an exhibit that goes beyond a simple display of art.
“The entire mission behind the Green Patriot Posters movement has been to get the community to contribute and to have it be a public open forum, giving people and designers the opportunity to design a poster and send it in,” says Design Museum Executive Director, Sam Aquillano. “From the beginning, we here at Design Museum knew that we wanted to add to the organization’s already growing collection and thought it would be great to engage high school and college students in by featuring a student competition local to each city that the exhibit runs in. We got 70 entries from local students and have them displayed as a part of the exhibit.”
Mass Art Senior Anna Clark, Lasell College sophomore Hayley Boyle, and Lindsay Malatesta, a senior at Wentworth Institute of Technology, were all chosen as the winners of the Boston-based student competition and their designs can be seen alongside the 35 printed posters – from names like Shepard Fairey – and 500 digitally collection of Green Patriot Posters.
“Design Museum Boston functions as a pop up, using other organizations’ venues, and 315 on A embodies the same values that the Green Patriot Posters project does. Not only is the building Leaf – Labeling Ecologically Approved Fabrics – certified, but also engages in the same important environmental topics that are fused in the exhibit with the building’s sustainable features, like solar panels on the roof and the fact that the owner is also very sustainably focused,” says Aquillano.
Green Patriot Posters — posters for energy independence and the fight against climate change – will be showing through this Saturday at the gallery at 315 on A in the seaport, before moving onto the exhibit’s second stop in Portland, Oregon, where Design Museum Boston has just opened it’s second location. Be sure to catch the free show while it’s still here in Boston.