Posters have a short lifespan. They are designed, printed, posted and then removed or covered over. In addition, posters made in the Soviet Union before World War II were often printed on low quality paper due to industry shortages. It is the pre-World War II poster that is often given conservation urgency due to its tendency to rapidly disintegrate.
Restoration of posters is not an uncommon practice. Restoration (when performed expertly and methodically) helps preserve aesthetic value. In the Poster Plakat Collection, posters are professionally restored only on an as-needed basis while all the posters in the Collection are linen backed for strength and conservation. The posters below were restored at "The Art of Restoration" in Chicago, Illinois. Special thanks goes to Tom Tomc and his staff for their work, and to Eric E. Esper, for hours of painstaking labor on the large-scale jobs.
Only light retouching was required on this poster. For the edges, restoration of paper loss was achieved using original paper that had torn-off the poster.
Paper loss was restored on this poster using correct period paper. A full restoration of the bottom slogan was required.
Paper loss was restored using correct period paper.
Heavy paper loss was restored using the original paper that had torn-off the poster. An additional touch of restoration to the background image was needed.
Heavy paper loss on one corner was restored with original paper that had torn-off the poster. Restoration was needed on the borders and margins.
Paper loss was restored using the bits of original paper that broke-apart from the poster. Restoration was needed on the borders and margins.
Due to a paper shortage during the era when this piece was printed, the poster was printed on the back of an uncut Ukrainian ticket sheet.
While not badly damaged, this poster was improperly rolled. A simple linen backing fixed its look.
The back of this poster was printed on packaging paper for "Extra" brand (Экстра) Russian cigarettes-- a sign that the poster was printed during a paper shortage. The poster field was in good condition and only needed linen backing.
This poster was brittle and it suffered heavy crazing. While the margins had disintegrated, portions of the original paper were salvaged and added back into the piece.
This poster was extremely brittle and it suffered heavy paper loss around the edges. Years of improper storage added to its ruinous look. Restoration, touchup on the artwork and proper conservation were employed to bring it back to its pleasurable state.