Part V: Jazz Goes Underground

by Contemporary Posters on Monday, September 11, 2017

Jazz, following a brief re-emergence after World War II, was officially banned by 1950, but instead of disappearing went underground.
However, by the end of the decade, after Poland had achieved relative political autonomy from the USSR, Jazz again became an acceptable musical form.
The 1960’s through the 1980’s witnessed the development and growth of a vibrant jazz scene – jazz bands formed, clubs opened, foreign musicians visited and festivals such as Jazz Jamboree [1958] Jazz on Odra River [1964] and the International Jazz Pianist Festival Kalisz [1974] were instituted. Along with the rise in Jazz’s popularity, came artists’ commissions to create posters for Jazz performances and events. Interpretative portraits of jazz musicians also became voguish with Waldemar Swierzy initiating his Jazz Greats series honoring American jazz artists e.g. Duke Ellington [1975]. In the late 1980’s, the further loosening of restraints, followed by the fall of the Communist regime in 1989, resulted in more jazz – more musicians, recordings, performances, clubs, etc. but many fewer artistic jazz posters.

 Billie Holiday / Jazz Greats
Year of Release: 1990
Country: Poland
Size: 26.5″ x 38.5″
Artist: Waldemar Swierzy

  King Oliver 1885-1938 / Jazz Greats
Year of Release: 1975
Country: Poland
Size: 26″ x 37″
Artist: Waldemar Swierzy

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