40,000 Film Posters in a Wonderfully Eclectic Archive: Italian Tarkovsky Posters, Japanese Orson Welles, Czech Woody Allen & Much More


Here we have a poster for a film many of you will have heard of, and some of you will have watched right here on Open Cul­ture: Stalk­er, wide­ly con­sid­ered the most mas­ter­ful of Sovi­et auteur Andrei Tarkovsky’s career full of mas­ter­pieces. Need­less to say, the film has inspired no small amount of cinephile enthu­si­asm in the 37 years since its release, and if it has inspired the same in you, what bet­ter way to express it than to hang its poster on your wall? And why not take it to the next lev­el by hang­ing a Stalk­er poster from anoth­er coun­try, such as the Ital­ian one here?


We found it on Pos­ter­i­tati, a New York movie poster gallery whose online store also func­tions as a dig­i­tal archive of over 40,000 of these com­mer­cial-cin­e­mat­ic works of art, all con­ve­nient­ly sort­ed into cat­e­gories: not just Tarkovsky posters, but posters from the for­mer East Ger­many and Iran, posters from the Czech New Wave, and posters designed by the Japan­ese artist Tadanori Yokoo (whose works, said no less an observ­er of the human con­di­tion than Yukio Mishi­ma, “reveal all of the unbear­able things which we Japan­ese have inside our­selves”). And that’s just a small sam­pling of what Pos­ter­i­tati has to offer. If you dig deep enough, you can even find posters from Poland and the Czech Repub­lic with cats in them.


Avid Open Cul­ture read­ers might find Pos­ter­i­tati’s phi­los­o­phy sec­tion espe­cial­ly worth­while, con­tain­ing as it does posters for movies we’ve pre­vi­ous­ly fea­tured and movies about thinkers we like to write about, like Der­ri­da, Exam­ined LifeWittgen­stein, and of course the Slavoj Žižek-star­ring The Per­vert’s Guide to Ide­ol­o­gy and Žižek! 


They also sell posters at the site, though even the ones not in stock remain avail­able to view as images: just tog­gle the “IN STOCK ONLY” switch to the OFF posi­tion, and you can then see all of the posters in the col­lec­tion.  No mat­ter what your cin­e­mat­ic, intel­lec­tu­al, or aes­thet­ic inter­ests, you’ll find at least a few posters that pique your inter­est. The Japan­ese poster for Orson Welles’ F for Fake just above, for instance, rep­re­sents a near-per­fect inter­sec­tion of most of my own inter­ests. Just as well Pos­ter­i­tati does­n’t have it in stock — I’d prob­a­bly pay any­thing.

Relat­ed Con­tent:

50 Film Posters From Poland: From The Empire Strikes Back to Raiders of the Lost Ark

The Strange and Won­der­ful Movie Posters from Ghana: The Matrix, Alien & More

Japan­ese Movie Posters of 10 David Lynch Films

Down­load Vin­tage Film Posters in High-Res: From The Philadel­phia Sto­ry to Attack of the Crab Mon­sters

A Look Inside Mar­tin Scorsese’s Vin­tage Movie Poster Col­lec­tion

100 Great­est Posters of Film Noir

Strik­ing French, Russ­ian & Pol­ish Posters for the Films of Andrei Tarkovsky

Watch Stalk­er, Andrei Tarkovsky’s Mind-Bend­ing Mas­ter­piece Free Online

F for Fake: Orson Welles’ Short Film & Trail­er That Was Nev­er Released in Amer­i­ca

Based in Seoul, Col­in Mar­shall writes and broad­casts on cities, lan­guage, and style. He’s at work on a book about Los Ange­les, A Los Ange­les Primer, the video series The City in Cin­e­ma, the crowd­fund­ed jour­nal­ism project Where Is the City of the Future?, and the Los Ange­les Review of Books’ Korea Blog. Fol­low him on Twit­ter at @colinmarshall or on Face­book.

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Open Culture was founded by Dan Colman.