Poster Designs by Andrew Lewis

September 7, 2012

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Kyoto (left) and Impunidad (right) by Andrew Lewis

While going through the gallery of social justice posters on http://www.thegraphicimperative.org, I came across the poster on the right titled Impunidad by Andrew Lewis. The caption provided along with the poster reads: crimes are being committed in México, Central and South America with impunity and no regard to the law. This poster speaks to all people- red, black and white. The terror of repeated offenses to victims over and over again – this is impunity.

The repetition of color and of the organic face shapes give the poster a strong rhythmical design while simultaneously directing attention to the caption reading ‘carteles contra la impunidad.’ Having the caption in black allows the repeated face-shape to maintain focus of the poster, while still allowing the importance of the text to highlight the underlying symbolism of the image. To me, the subtle but critical nuance in the shape of the faces really provides the poster with an extra dose of emotional dissonance, while still being aesthetically pleasing.

The poster on the left, which I found on the designer’s personal website, first caught my eye because of the type reading ‘Kyoto,’ the first captial of Japan. As I looked at it closely, the composition and design elements, such as the clear, simple division of foreground and background, reminded me a bit of traditional Japanese woodprints; Hokhusai’s The Great Wave off Kanagawa in particular comes to mind, due to the strong arching of the train’s path is reminiscent of the wave present in Hokusai’s print, though there is no explicit link to the master woodblock printer’s word that I have seen on Lewis’ webpage.

—-   Adrian Rodriguez

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