About

Mission & History

Poster House is the first museum in the United States dedicated exclusively to posters.

Through exhibitions, events, and publications, Poster House presents a global view of posters from their earliest appearance in the late 1800s, to their present-day use. Poster House takes its mission from the medium, aiming to engage and educate all audiences as we investigate this large format graphic design and its public impact.

Posters explore:

  • mass communication and persuasion
  • the intersection of art and commerce
  • control of the public domain


For a poster to succeed, it must communicate. By combining the power of images and words, posters speak to audiences quickly and persuasively. Blending design, advertising, and art, posters clearly reflect the place and time in which they were made. Through them, Poster House explores everything from avant-garde design, to changing societal norms, and all the fads and fashions over the last 160 years.

Poster House was founded in 2015 with an eye towards filling a long-acknowledged gap in the New York cultural landscape. While there are several poster museums around the world, New York, with its long relationship with advertising and design, did not have such a dedicated public institution. After several years of planning and construction, Poster House opens its doors in June 2019.

Staff

Ola Baldych

Design Director

Samantha Hirsch

Education Director

Melissa Walker

Collection Manager

John F. Lynch

Installation Manager

Greta Jenkins

Marketing Associate

Colin Brady

Director of Operations

Heidi Smith

Director of Retail Operations

Melissa Caruso-Scott

Director of Operations for Café des Affiches

Advisory Board

Gail Anderson

Creative Director, Visual Arts Press, School of Visual Arts

Myrna Davis

Executive Director Emeritus, Art Directors Club

Elizabeth Guffey

Professor of Art and Design History, SUNY Purchase

Steven Heller

Co-founder and Co-chair of MFA Designer as Author Program, SVA; author

Eve Kahn

Design Historian, Former Antiques Columnist at the New York Times

Nicholas Lowry

President, Swann Galleries

Ellen Lupton

Director, Graphic Design MFA, MICA; Curator of Contemporary Design, Cooper Hewitt

Chad Phillips

Director of Merchandising, Brooklyn Museum

Tim Rodgers

Director, The Wolfsonian-FIU

Paula Scher

Partner, Pentagram

Alexander Tochilovsky

Curator, Herb Lubalin Study Center of Design and Typography, Cooper Union

Founding Members

Our Founding Members supported us from the very beginning, becoming a part of the Poster House Family before we even opened our doors. We are incredibly pleased to recognize their generosity and commitment.

Founding Patron / $2000

Chris T. Concannon

Diane B. Lippert

Jack Rennert

Linda Knight

Peter Kahane

Rubin & Erica Shur

Willis & Claudia Allen

Founding Supporter Member / $500

Bellamy Schmidt

David Pollack

Katherine & Gary Bartholomaus

Kathy Valko

KUDOS Design Collaboratory

Lars Larsson

Lauren Miller Walsh

Liz & Chips Moore

Philip Williams

Shelley & Bennett Schmidt

Skirbunt Family

Susan Termohlen

Vincent Ng

Founding Individual Member / $100

Alexis Lovely

Alfra Martini

Amy McNamara

Amy Neiman

Andrew Beckman

Andrew Bencsko III

Andrew Garvin

Anne L. Bradford

Anthony J. Ferrara

Anthony John Bonner

Becky Carpenter

Blake Livingston

Cameron Etheredge

Camille Hall

Catriona Werth

Chris Haske

Christian Havemeyer

Christian Henkel

Craig Welsh

Curt Lund

Daniel Frohwirth

Daniel Prada

Devin Mathis

Don Tancredo

Donna Wilson

Elizabeth Resnick

Emily Long

Gerald Thamm

Giovanni Negron

H Ted Bahr

Heather Jones

Heiki Schneider

Jack Strain

James McCobb

Jameson Parker

Jane Wichern

Jason Forman

Jet The Guy

Jodi Hirsch

Jodi Yellen

Joseph Truong

Juliano Domingues

Kevin Smith

Kristin Leu

Lars Schmidt

Laurie Yosha

Lillian Kirch

Lyle Cohen

Maneka K.Grewal

Marcin Zeglinski

Mark Weinbaum

Maryanne D. Olson

Max Hamlin

Mickey Ross

Muriel Light Egan

Nanci Guerra

Nancy LeaMond

Norbert Drey

Peter Stults

Philip K. Bradford

Richard Dorfman

Robert Depczenski

Robert Duane

Rudy Franchi

Russell Calabrese

Sal Scamardo

Sandra Levinson

Sean O'Neill

Shanti Sparrow

shiigemiichii iishiitanii

Sidney Fillipi

Stephanie Robinson

Susan Hadden

Tanja Herron

Tom Napper

Tory Van Dine

Travis Simpson

Trevor Carmick

The Building

119 West 23rd Street was built around 1901 by The National Cloak Company. The area had first been an elite residential neighborhood, shifting into an active theater district after the Civil War. But the theaters gradually moved north to Times Square and the commercial field moved to 23rd Street. At 10 stories, the building was quite tall for its day, and housed more than just the National Cloak Company’s tailoring services for elegant ladies. Several publishing firms occupied the building, including George Routledge & Sons. Later in the 1920s, stationers and mail order companies moved into 119, followed by novelty manufacturers around the 1950s. But today the building is best known for being home to Tekserve (1987 - 2016), an Apple repair store that was iconic to New Yorkers for its jam-packed decor and unparalleled service.

In 2018, LTL Architects took on the gut-renovation of the almost 15,000 square foot space over 2 floors. The design considers that posters are intended for the street, and uses the length of the space to evoke a sidewalk, playing with industrial materials. Gesturing to the space’s history, the design incorporates several existing features including the exposed brick walls, barrel vaults and cast-iron columns. These elements create a dialogue with the new architecture, blending old and new, playful and serious, and embodying an embrace of the poster’s unique identity as both commerce and art, public information and cultural artifact.

About LTL Architects

LTL Architects (Lewis.Tsurumaki.Lewis) is an award winning, design intensive architecture firm founded by Paul Lewis, Marc Tsurumaki and David J. Lewis and located in New York City. LTL engages a diverse range of work, from large scale academic and cultural buildings to interiors and speculative research, realizing inventive solutions that turn the constraints of each project into the design trajectory, exploring opportunistic overlaps between space, form and materials.

Collections

Poster House actively collects posters that 1) are historically or aesthetically important to the field, 2) support future museum programming, and 3) can be part of the Poster House Living Archive.

The Poster House Living Archive is a collection of contemporary posters from around the world. We are grateful to the original collectors in the 1880s who followed wheatpasters at night through the streets of Paris, built relationships with artists, and supported dealers in the new field of poster collecting. We now continue the tradition by reaching out to designers, ad agencies, and companies to grow a Living Archive of exceptional contributions to the poster medium being made now.

If you are interested in donating to Poster House, please consider the following:

  • We do not accept unsolicited donations, so please do not send us posters without speaking with our Collections Department.
  • Poster House defines a poster as a public-facing printed notice meant to persuade or influence. We do not collect art posters, limited-edition prints, museum posters, or other images originally meant for interior decoration.
  • We reserve the right to dispose of any donated posters that jeopardize the safety of the rest of our collection. This includes posters infected by mold, posters printed with hazardous inks, and posters printed on vinyl stickers.
  • Poster House encourages you to claim a tax deduction for your donation to the fullest extent allowed by law. If your donation exceeds $5,000 in value, you should seek outside appraisal prior to donation. While we cannot appraise your collection, we can recommend appraisers who can.
  • We review collection donation requests periodically; please allow us 10 business days to respond.
  • If you’re unsure if what you have qualifies or if you have any questions about our donation policy, please reach out! collections@posterhouse.org