“Summer of Love” at International Poster Gallery

International Poster Gallery presents “Summer of Love,” the gallery’s 15th summer poster show, from July 4 through Sept. 1, 2008. The exhibition features more than 40 posters for travel, expositions, entertainment and more.

The exhibition’s centerpiece, Arnold Skolnick’s original 1969 Woodstock poster, played a pivotal role in the success of the largest and most influential rock concert of the 1960s. One symbol – a dove perched on a guitar – succinctly expresses the Woodstock ideal. The poster’s fine print, a treasure trove of juicy memorabilia, indicates the $18 3-day ticket price, a list of performers from Jefferson Airplane, Jimi Hendrix, The Band, Santana, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Joan Baez and many others, as well as “dozens of curious food and fruit combinations to experiment with.” This poster represents just one of the exhibition’s mementos of the “Psychedelic Sixties.” Additional works include a remarkable Through the Looking Glass LSD blotter and a Neon Rose poster by Victor Moscoso.

Nembhard N. Culin’s Art Deco masterpiece In 1939 – The New York World’s Fair is also featured. Culin, an architect working on the World’s Fair project in New York, was commissioned to create this advance poster for the event. His depiction of the Trylon and Perisphere captured the stunning majesty of the fair before it even existed. The bird’s-eye view of the ramp to the “World of Tomorrow” inspired a sense of anticipation comparable to monuments of earlier fairs such as the Eiffel Tower (Paris, 1889). This rare piece is hand-signed.

 Herbert Leupin’s Eptinger (1958), one of more than 30 designs he created for the Swiss mineral water brand, illustrates the refreshing quality of a cool beverage on a hot summer’s day. Having earned the distinguished Swiss Poster of the Year Award, this piece benefits from Leupin’s signature use of vibrant color and a casual style.

A tribute to the incomparable beauty of the French coastline, Bernard Villemot’s Plages de France (1955) invokes memories of lazy sun soaked beach days. Villemot studied with Art Deco master Paul Colin in Paris where he developed his elegant style of rich colors and abstraction. A prolific artist, he produced long-lived campaigns for Bally, Orangina, Perrier and a number of French travel destinations.

“What a perfect way to celebrate our 15th annual summer show,” comments gallery owner Jim Lapides.  “These vibrant and playful images truly capture the sprit of summer.”

In addition to gallery shows and special exhibitions, IPG’s Web site, www.InternationalPoster.com, offers the largest, most comprehensive online collection of vintage advertising posters in the world. Originally launched in 1998, the site has undergone a recent renovation and now contains nearly 4,500 images accessible through a powerful search engine.

The show is free and open to the public. Gallery hours are Monday through Saturday 10 a.m.-6 p.m. and Sunday noon-6 p.m. The Gallery is located at 205 Newbury Street in Boston. Call (617) 375-0076 or visit www.InternationalPoster.com for information.