Monday, January 15, 2007
VW 1500 promotional posters, 1961
Created for the introduction of the VW 1500 line in 1961, these illustrated posters bridge the gap between VW's printed publicity of the 1950s, much of which featured artwork by the illustrator Reuters, and the more modern, photographic direction of the 1960s. The illustrations seem strangely old fashioned compared to the modern graphics of the VW + VW 1500 campaign of the same time -- in fact it's hard to imagine how they could have been used together. The only thing they have in common is their emphasis on the 1500s as new additions to the VW family and not replacements for the existing models. It's almost as if VW was hedging its bet on the modern "yellow campaign."
Doyle Dane Bernbach's groundbreaking US advertising campaign for VW was launched in 1959 and within a few years VW's worldwide publicity began incorporating the clever copywriting and graphic minimalism of DDB's ads. For better or worse the days of illustrated VW advertising were over by the mid-sixties.