Presented is an original lithograph poster by engraver and illustrator Joseph Pennell. The poster, circa 1918, features an image of the Statue of Liberty with the caption "That liberty shall not perish from the Earth. Buy liberty bonds." This poster was produced during World War I as the fourth liberty loan.
The poster features bright yellow coloring across the composition. Center is an image of the Statue of Liberty, which stands erect amid a sea of flames coming up from New York City. The statue is mostly intact, although the crowned head has fallen off and rests at the base of the water. A squadron of airplanes flies away overhead as the entire city is left in ruins. Amid the tragedy, the Statue of Liberty stands tall as a symbol of American resilience even in a time of tremendous strife. The poster urges American onlookers to help the war effort and buy liberty bonds.
Joseph Pennell (1857-1926) was a famous American artist of the late 19th through the early 20th centuries. Pennell was Philadelphia born and was a friend to American painter James Whistler. Pennell worked as an artist producing mainly engravings, lithographs, and illustrations; some of which appeared in McClure's and Harper's magazines.
During WWI, Pennell produced a series of influential lithograph posters that depicted war efforts in Britain, France, and ultimately the United States. Pennell's poster designs for the United States were published as part of the Charles Dana Gibson's Division of Pictorial Publicity of the Committee on Public Information, which was organized upon America's entry into the war in 1917. Of his experience in producing promotional posters, Pennell explained:
"When the United States wished to make public its wants, whether of men or money, it found that art–as the European countries had found–was the best medium."
Overall very good condition considering age. No visible tears or significant fold lines. Colors are crisp and free of visible toning. Artist's name is printed in lithograph at the base of the composition. The poster is framed according to conservation standards in a black frame.