LACMA’s purchase of movie poster collection a boon to Los Angeles, says Michael Govan 2

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Joyful news as the artistic merits of the marketing of movies during the High Hollywood era gets strong validation with the addition of an important movie-poster collection at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA).

bordertownMichael Govan, LACMA CEO and Wallis Annenberg Director,  announced on Saturday April 16 the acquisition of the Mike Kaplan Poster Collection through a generous gift  of an anonymous donor.

The collection of some 880 posters, mostly from the Golden Age of movie poster design (1930 – 1950), is one of the most important collections of movie posters still in private hands. It was assembled with a connoisseur’s eye over 35 years by designer, art director, and producer Mike Kaplan, who generously donated a portion of the collection to make the acquisition possible.

In an email to arts•meme, Govan shared his strong feeling that the collection found the correct home at LACMA. “This amazing collection reflects nearly a lifetime of Mike Kaplan’s love and knowledge. I am so happy it will be cared for in Los Angeles,” wrote Govan.

moon-over-miamiFor his part, Kaplan says, “Over the 35 years I’ve been collecting, I often considered that the choices made would one day be acknowledged by a major museum as the art they are.

“That dream has now come true with the acquisition by the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, one of the world’s great museums.”

The collection, highlights of which will be included in future exhibitions,focuses on exceptional illustrators, motifs, studio periods, national styles, stars, directors, and film genres. Many posters are the only copy in existence, while others are the best preserved of very few remaining examples.

Congratulations all around: to LACMA, to Mike Kaplan, and to the city of Los Angeles!

2 thoughts on “LACMA’s purchase of movie poster collection a boon to Los Angeles, says Michael Govan

  1. ladymiss22 Mar 20,2017 2:22 am

    I would sure like to know something about the illustrators of these posters … It’s a shame that they’re mostly unrecognized …

  2. Bill Stern May 3,2016 10:38 am

    To: Mike Kaplan

    Thank you for honoring an underappreciated aspect of California design
    by assiduously assembling this important collection and then helping to make it available for the public to enjoy.

    Bill Stern, Executive Director, Museum of California Design

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