The art of poster-making flourished in Poland following the Second World War. There were two main state institutions that commissioned artists to create posters: Film Polski (Polish Film) and Centrala Wynajmu Filmow (Movie Rentals Central).
Competition among artists and art-school graduates for commissions was fierce, and since they were not working with or for Hollywood movie studios, they were free to create designs inspired more by the mood of a film than its literal imagery.
This creativity and freedom of expression is why collectors still prize these Polish film posters today.
You can see examples of Polish poster art for some Australian films below.
The central motif may be an atomic mushroom cloud but the incorporation of text gives the design an almost strangely playful psychedelic feel, pre-dating designs from the late 1960s.
The poster for the Polish release of Picnic at Hanging Rock has an ethereal quality that foreshadows the events of the film.
This Polish poster for Wake In Fright masterfully captures the terror depicted in this outback tale, illustrating grotesque faces of men inciting alcohol-fuelled violence.
The title roughly translates to The Ends of the Earth.
Notes by Stephen Groenewegen
A smiling Mick Dundee protects a frightened girl from eight colourful crocodiles in this chaotic poster for the Polish release of Crocodile Dundee.
The Polish one-sheet poster for Storm Boy (1976) represents the bonds of friendship between a boy and his pelican, depicting them as inseparable.
Polish film poster artists weren’t constrained by Hollywood movie studios and were free to create designs inspired by the mood of a film.
Notes by Adam Blackshaw
Polish quad poster for 'Picnic at Hanging Rock' (1975).
This Polish one-sheet poster for The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert (1994) depicts the vibrant quirkiness of the film.
In this one-sheet poster for the Polish release of Brian Trenchard-Smith's Stunt Rock (1978) we have an amazing design for a unique film.
The film intercuts Grant Page's spectacular stunt work with the spellbinding theatrical rock music of the band Sorcery.
Trenchard-Smith has said that the idea for the film came to him in 1977 with the basic concept of: 'Famous stuntman meets famous rock group. Much stunt, much rock. The kids will go bananas.'
The poster has a bold design with the central figure forming a dynamic X figure across the image. The flaming film title only adds to the drama. Ultimately this simple design works to attract and hold the viewer's attention.