One hundred years ago in 1920 a Government department was created to create outdoor advertising for any and all clients. For 67 years Railways Studios were the most prodigious producer of outdoor advertising in New Zealand’s history, and arguably the creator of our richest reservoir of commercial art.
The book chronicles the history of Railways Studios, and features many reproductions of commercial art and of railway scenes where the posters were displayed.
The Studios’ advertisements ranged from posters to painted billboards and brochures, and they decorated every city and town, creating a gallery of the street.
Whatever the promotion – from rail travel and tourism to enlistment in the army, clothing and health promotion – the Studios played a role. Thousands of its designs influenced public attitudes, shaping how New Zealanders saw themselves.
This definitive history of railways advertising is a time capsule of New Zealand life and examines the art of Railways Studios, detailing its formative place in New Zealand design and art history.