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The First Levant Fair in “Palestine Near East Exhibition and Fair”. Tel Aviv October 4 – November 7, 1925. Color lithograph print poster designed by artist Meir Gur Aryeh [plate-signed], Industrial Art Studio, Graphica Press, Jerusalem.
Rare Poster advertisement for the Palestine Near East Exhibition and Fair which took place in Tel Aviv, in its second year [preceding the Levant Fair by a number of years]. A woman in Oriental dress, somewhat biblical, against a backdrop of a map of the Land of Israel and the emblem of the Levant Fair, the “Flying Camel.” The peddler offers her wares in the form of a basket with fruits which are an agricultural product of the fruits of the Land of Israel. The map in the background includes the Land of Israel, the Arabian Peninsula, part of the Mediterranean Sea and part of the Red Sea.
The Oriental view is a recurring motif in advertising posters for tourism of the Land of Israel produced by leading designers of the period. The various illustrators depicted the Land as perceived in the glory days of Tanach. Spring and nature represented the romantic longing for the renewal of the youth of the people in Zion, and was one of the most beloved subjects of artists such as Gur-Aryeh and Lilien (for example, in the Mizrach plate he designed, which depicted the Land of Israel as an Oriental land, magical and mythical – a land of sun and palm trees), with the Utopian image of the Land as an Oriental land of legendary wealth was very widespread in their works which were intended to “market” the Land of Israel in the Jewish diaspora and among tourists who visited for a limited time. The ‘Mizrach’ presented not only as the natural and original place of the people, but also as a place, in contrast to the gloomy climate in Europe, with an abundance of sun and agricultural yield. The aim of this type of work was to achieve a purpose beyond the realm of art: to increase interest in the Land of Israel among diaspora Jews and to encourage immigration, while diverting attention from the real difficulties which prevailed in the Land those years: drought, swamps, the Arab enemy, etc. The result was one-time monumental works such as this, which were of higher quality that those that preceded them and those that came after them.
Meir Gur-Aryeh [1891-1951] was a native of Russia, he completed his study of art in Russia, and after immigrating to the Land of Israel in 1913, he continued his studies at Bezalel. He established a studio called “Menorah” for practical art objects, with Ze’ev Raban and Shmuel Persov. In 1923, he opened a course called “Industrial Art Studio” which dealt mainly with graphic design, where this poster was designed. The fair for which this advertising poster was designed was organized by the Trade and Industry Company which was established by Tel Aviv entrepreneurs who saw unprecedented success in the form of tens of thousands then hundreds of thousands of Jews, Arabs, English and tourists visiting each year.
This poster was printed in 3 languages
Hebrew English and Arabic
Size: 85×51 cm. Fine condition.