Nina Vatolina began producing posters in late 1930s and she went to become one of the leading Soviet poster artists of all time. She was a graduate of the Ogiz Technical School for Arts and of the Moscow Art Institute (class of 1942). Vatolina additionally acquired illustration skills from the master poster designer Viktor Deni. In fact, Deni considered Vatolina one of his most talented students.
Located at 9 Kronverkskaia Street in Leningrad, the Leningrad Offset Printing Plant had its roots in Imperial Russia. It was a large printing house founded in 1881 by Theodore Kibbel (Fedor Fyodorovich Kibbel) located at Kronverkskaia and Mir Streets in St. Petersburg, (A.K.A. Petrograd). In 1917, the Council of People’s Commissars of Labor nationalized the printing house. In 1918, the Soviet government named the printing house the 1st State Lithography and thereafter, it underwent a variety of name changes. In 1924 it was re-named in honor of Mikhail Pavlovich Tomskii (1880-1936), head of the Soviet trade union and the head of the State Publishing House. In the mid-1930s, it became the 24th Lithography Workshop of OGIZ (Association of State Book and Magazine Publishers) and by the early 1950s, its name was changed to the 1st Leningrad Offset Printing Plant operating under the UPP of Lensovnarkoz. It remained under the UPP into the early 1960s when it was re-named the Leningrad Offset Printing Plant. Thereafter, it underwent management changes such as being under the printing trusts of Glavpoligrafprom, Glavpoligrafizdat and Soiuzpoligrafprom.
Iskusstvo was the Art Publishing House (A.K.A. Visual Arts Publishing) that was created in 1936 from Ogiz-Izogiz (State Art and Literature Publishing House). It disseminated books and journals dealing with graphic design and the fine arts, and it issued numerous posters. Since the Iskusstvo banner was part of the State Printing Works in Leningrad (St. Petersburg) and Moscow, its two main offices were located in those two cities.