Olympic poster exhibition draws in visitors

All Olympic Posters are owned by Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums  EDITION OLYMPIA 1972 Gmbh 1971.
All Olympic Posters are owned by Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums EDITION OLYMPIA 1972 Gmbh 1971.
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AN OLYMPIC exhibition is proving a winner with visitors.

The Olympic Poster display from the 1972 Munich Summer Games is drawing in the crowds at Monkwearmouth Station Museum.

The exhibition includes a collection of 19 of the original 26 posters dating back 40 years to the games.

The poster exhibition is part of the Sunderland in 2012 programme, a series of sporting and cultural events and activities designed to celebrate this summer’s London Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Coun Paul Watson, leader of Sunderland City Council, said: “This is a fantastic exhibition.

“It’s remarkable to have 19 of the original 26 posters from the Olympics available to view, despite the fact that it took place 40 years ago.”

He added: “Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums has done a tremendous job of restoring the posters and we are delighted that we are able to showcase them to people in Sunderland.

“The exhibition has generated a fantastic level of interest.

“It captures an important aspect of the Sunderland in 2012 programme and that is the cultural opportunities it brings to people in the city.”

The posters were specially commissioned works by artists of the day, including David Hockney, Serge Paliokov, Oskar Kokoschka, Allen Jones and Max Bill, and they display strong, individual designs in a wide range of styles.

Christina Stephenson, conservation officer at Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums, said: “The posters were in a relatively reasonable condition, but were still in need of conservation to repair and preserve them.

“All small tears and paper damage were repaired with delicate handmade Japanese paper, as it has a very long fibre and is flexible.

“To bond it, we used a gluten free wheat starch paste, which is reversible and invisible.

“The posters were then humidified, and then gradually dried out in a large veneering press, which is traditionally used to veneer wood.

“Conservation of artefacts and works of art can be a slow process but it’s very rewarding.”

Posters have become an important part of the Olympic legacy, with every Olympic Games, since the Stockholm Games of 1912, having an official poster.

More recent games have produced more than one poster and these have left a lasting legacy of their event.

Jo Cunningham, manager of Sunderland Museums, added: “These posters are stunning – we’re lucky to have them in our collection, as most of them are collector’s items.

“They have been immaculately repaired by our experts; the feedback from our visitors has been amazing, it’s proving a tremendously popular exhibition.”

The exhibition will be on display until June 5.

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