Porsche at 24 hours of Le Mans poster
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Shown below is another poster by Strenger, from the same year and likewise using Futura Display, for the Grand Prix Suisse de la montagne. It shows Porsche’s Huschke von Hanstein – Porsche’s head of public relations and race director from 1952 to 1968 – in the Porsche 550 Spyder RS 1500.
I’ve used the opportunity to wrap up a draft about Strenger’s (and Volz’s) later work from the 1960s, using Folio: Porsche posters (1961–1969)
As much as I can appreciate the aesthetic of Strenger’s poster design, I’m instantly reminded of the dark sides of motorsport. What the Le Mans poster doesn’t mention is the disaster of 1955 that fell into Porsche’s winning streak of class victories: the catastrophic crash killed 84 people and “led to an immediate temporary ban on motorsports in France, Spain, Switzerland, West Germany, and other nations, until racetracks could be brought to a higher safety standard.” Five years after this poster was printed, Trips collided with another car in the 1961 Italian Grand Prix at Monza, fatally throwing him from his Ferrari, and killing fifteen spectators with him. In 1973, Frankenberg was killed in a car accident, too, albeit not during a race.
Motorsports in the 50s and 60s were extremely dangerous — but we can thank the individuals and companies involved for many of the advances that we not take for granted (seatbelts and shoulder harnesses, rear-view mirrors, crash crumple zones, rollover protection, fuel safe gas tanks, safer highway guardrails and crash barriers).
And, from the standpoint of this site — automotive/racing posters and brochures demonstrate some great uses of typography and graphic design.