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Bertalan Pór

Proletarians of the World, Unite!, by Bertalan Pór, 1919. Lithograph.

Mihály Biró

1919 Május 1, by Mihály Biró, 1919. Lithograph.

It was a very small exhibit on Hungarian Revolutionary Posters at MoMA. What you see here is basically it…less than a handful of pieces tucked in the corner of the mid-century furniture exhibit. I almost missed it. Anyway, I still enjoyed seeing these few pieces. In particular, Biró’s Red Man with a Hammer. Originally produced in 1912, the figure was used many times during Hungary’s 1919 revolution to depict the common man as a Herculean figure.

“The poster advertised May Day celebrations; this holiday, associated with the international worker’s movement, was the biggest public event during the 133 days of the Hungarian Soviet Republic. The concept of posters as public decorations for May Day was at least partly inspired by Soviet Russian precedents.” —From MoMA placard

Mary Maru