The 1950s ushered in a period of tremendous growth in the development of consumer electronics, with Philips being one of the largest manufacturers of such devices. During the 1950s, Philips became a household name through the production and marketing of their radios, record players and televisions. With such a large collection of appliances, Philips commissioned dozens of European artists to promote their new product lines. Artists included the likes of A.M Cassandre, Hervé Morvan, Jean Colin and many more. Yet, the most exceptional poster was produced by Pierre Fix-Masseau for the Philips transistor radio.
The image advertises one of the new transistor radios that were trending at that time, accompanied by the enjoyment of using the product at the beach. The poster evokes a sense of fun and relaxation, it is incredibly effective at attracting an onlookers eye with its rich yellow and detailed figures. The poster is reflective of Fix-Masseau’s artistic philosophy: ‘be simple, be direct, and use a universal language’.
Fix-Masseau began his career as an apprentice to master Art Deco designer A.M. Cassandre, for whom he worked for from 1926 to 1928. This experience greatly impacted Fix-Masseau, who returned regularly to the geometry of his early Art Deco posters, but gradually moved away from this style to adopt one more of great simplicity. Although it can be said, Cassandre’s interest in foreshortening, heightened focal points, and flattened planes can be seen in Fix-Masseau’s works. Fix-Masseau combined Cassandre’s influence with his own mastery of perspective and intricate detail to create his own, distinctive style.
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