Leonetto Cappiello Prints

Written by Serena Berger
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Leonetto Cappiello prints are recognized as some of the most vivid posters to emerge since the 1900s. Cappiello was among the first artists to recognize the importance of catching the attention of motorists as well as pedestrians, creating a style all his own in order to do so. Over the course of his career, he created more than 1000 advertising posters, offering a plethora from which vintage poster aficionados can choose.

The Style of Leonetto Cappiello Prints

The people and animals in Cappiello's posters were always vivid, as though he had brought them to life. Through swirling brushstrokes and contrasting colors, his posters conveyed their message not only through the text, but through a pictorial medium as well. The style that Cappiello brought to his posters was reminiscent of his earlier work as a caricaturist, using strong colors to convey a sense of humor and lightheartedness.

Arguably the most popular Leonetto Cappiello prints are the wine posters that he designed. Cappiello's ingenuity led to designs such as two zebras, one black and white while the other was black and red, leaping in Florio e Cinzano and an orange peel spiraling around a clown in Bitter Campari. Like many of his other posters, these were set against black backgrounds so that the images would stand out even more, causing viewers to remember the image, as well as the product being advertised.

Leonetto Cappiello prints are the quintessential examples of vintage advertising. Though they appear dated by today's printing standards, the classic appearance of the posters can add a touch of character to any room. Whether you are interested in advertising and want to reflect on earlier designs or are looking for a fun poster to add some old-world charm to a room, the variety of Cappiello's clients cover a range of products, all cleverly advertised in the artist's signature whimsical style.


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