Poster Design by Uwe Loesch

17 April – 13 June, 2010

With Punktum., a large format poster, Uwe Loesch gained an international reputation at the beginning of the 80s. Punktum. received the Grand Prix from the International Poster Biennale in Lahti and was then put on show for a number of years in the Museum of Modern Art in New York, together with other of his works. Punktum., taken literally, makes a mark!  Loesch, dedicated to minimalism, was a trend-setter. He anticipated many of a future computer generation’s forms of expression. He sees his work as an “attack on the rectangular surface in the mind of the viewer”. Using the simplest graphic and typographic means, he demonstratively stages or denies the interrelation between image and language. He was pioneering in his use of blurring and discovered the “principle of optical illusion”. Loesch work was always reflexive of the media and called into questions posters in their traditional form. He invented the “book poster”, a large format cut and bound in a book format, the “floor poster” to be walked on, the “window-poster”, printed on both sides. He transformed posters into a guillotine, an instigation, a carpet, an interactive wailing wall.

The majority of his posters are part of large campaigns for public institutions, ministries, trade fairs and exhibitions by well-known museums and companies. Furthermore, he published “sign of the time posters” which he described as political interference.

The exhibition “Punktum. Poster Design by Uwe Loesch” shows a number of large format posters for the first time as well. It reviews of 40 years of poster design. Uwe Loesch’s first poster to be put up in public comes from 1968. Loesch did not develop a formal style in the narrow sense of the term, rather a design principle that focussed on communication. In doing so he took up trendy design neuroses, ridiculed typographical trends and cited with ironic distance the Zeitgeist in art and commerce. To this respect, the exhibition offers a fascinating overview of the development of graphic and typographic design in the second half of the 20th century and the first decade of the new millennium.

The result of this multifaceted work was honored with numerous first prizes and medals from the International Poster Biennales as well as the annual competitions of the Art Directors Club (ADC) and the Type Directors Club (TDC) of New York. In 1995 his poster “Little Boy”, 50 years after the destruction of Hiroshema, was awarded the Grand Prix of the international competition Deutzche Preis für Kommunikationsdesign (reddot award), in 2001 he again won the Grand Prix in Lahti for his large format poster www.scheisse.de (protesting Neo-Nazi propaganda in the Internet), and in 2006 the first prize from the “Five Star Designers’ Banquet” International Invitational Poster Biennial, Osaka for the best poster of the new millennium as well as the gold medal from the International Poster Biennale in Warsaw for the poster “Die Gegenwart der DInge” for the Ruhrlandmuseum in Essen and most recently in 2008, for the second time, the first prize of the International Invitational Poster Exhibition in Fort Collins, USA for the last days poster “Requiem”. In 2008 he was also awarded the renowned Gutenburgpreis from the City of Leipzig for his “pioneering work of using, vividly and interpretively, fonts both in book and in poster typography”.

In over 30 solo exhibitions, his posters have been on show worldwide: in the Museu de Artes Brasileira, São Paulo, in the Israel Museum, Jerusalem, in the Galerie Anatome, Paris, in the ggg Ginza Graphic Gallery, Tokyo and not least the China Academy of Fine Arts, Hangzhou, China among others.

Uwe Loesch has been president of the Germans members of the AGI Alliance Graphique Internationale since 2002. He is a co-opted member of the TDC, N.Y., the ADC for Germany and the Deutschen Fotografischen Akademie, Leinfelden.

Uwe Loesch, was born in Dresden in 1943, grew up in Leipzig and has lives in Düsseldorf since 1958. From 1964 to 1968 he studied graphic design at the Peter-Behrens-Werkkunstschule. In 1985 he became professor of global media design at the Fochhochschule Düsseldorf. In 1990 he was named professor at the Bergische Universität Wuppertal for communications design, succeeding Willy Fleckhaus, where he worked until the Spring of 2008.

Appearing with the exhibition is a catalogue with a list of works in Edition Folkwang:Steidl, 132 pages, 24 Euro in the Museum.