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24 JUNE 2013

Boris Bilinsky's Constructivist-inspired Metropolis film poster

"This composition comprises the flat, featureless and strongly linear below–ground buildings of Metropolis' workers city, transformed and transposed into a mass of soaring, above–ground skyscrapers, huddled together and rather chaotically intersected by aerial roads and walkways. This interpretation of Fritz Lang's urban vision, as opposed to a mere reproduction of images from the film, makes a stunning poster. The strongly linear elements of Bilinsky's cityscape contrasts with the circular Tower of Babel and other soft–edged constructions which exist in Joh Fredersen's above–ground city for the rich and privileged. This poster has been reproduced in a number of publications dealing with European film posters, posters in general, and art movements of the 1920s. Bilinsky's work presents an artisitc bridge between Russian constructivism with is hard edges and linearity, and the soft, romantic elements so much a part of the French tradition."

Fig.1 Metropolis – L'Alliance Cinématographique Européenne présente une production UFA réalisé par Fritz Lang d'aprés le scénario de Thea von Harbou. UFA ACE', 4 Sheet poster, (240 x 320 cm) 224 x 303.5 cm / 96 x 120 inches, Farblithografie, Bédos et Cie, Paris, 1927. Signed 'Boris Bilinsky', upper right. Collection: Kunstbibliothek, Staatliche Museen / Stiftung Preußischer Kulturbesitz, Berlin. René Clémenti–Bilinsky catalogue no.1030.

(Michael Organ and René Clémenti–Bilinsky)

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TAGS

1920s1927 • Boris Bilinsky • cityscapeConstructivist-inspireddesign formalismfilm posterFrench artistic traditionFritz Lang • hard edges • Joh Fredersen • linear elements • linearityMetropolis (1927) • Michael Organ • modernist aesthetics • Modernist masterpiece • poster design • Rene Clementi-Bilinsky • romantic elements • skyscraper • soft elements • Thea von HarbouTower of Babelurban visionvisual design

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
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