The Graphic Artists who made skiing cool, Christie’s South Kensington, London

Skiing hasn’t always been about fun, sun, glamour and Glühwein. To lure tourists to their slopes, fledgling resorts such as St. Moritz and Klosters hired some of the finest poster artists of the 20th century.

The January Christie’s Interiors sale (on January 11th 2017) this year will be featuring the Ski Sale (starting at 6pm), with 101 original alpine posters up for auction.

Legendary graphic designer Walter Herdeg (St. Moritz poster above) is best remembered as the founder of Graphis, the international magazine widely credited with shaping contemporary design culture.

Herdeg’s own designs were notable for the innovative techniques they employed, combining photographic images with typefaces inspired by handwriting. His travel posters advertising the luxury resort of St. Moritz became particularly well known, many featuring a burst of sun still used as the resort’s logo today.  The estimate for this poster ranges between £2,500-3,500.

Paris born Roger Broders (La Savoie above) became one of the most prolific poster designers of the 1930s, creating sun-soaked advertisements for French resorts including Marseille and Cannes, as well as posters aimed at luring the viewer farther afield, to locations including Rome, Tunis and Florence.

His depictions of Swiss ski resorts are no less celebrated. This La Savoie poster has been estimated between £3,000-5,000.

The Chateau d’Oex poster from 1933 (estimates starts at £3000) above was designed by Alex Walter Diggelmann, an adept orienteer, balloonist and crossbowman, he was also one of the country’s most celebrate graphic designers, creating striking posters that advertised resorts across the country.

Diggelmann was the official designer for the 1948 Winter Olympics in St. Moritz, creating the event’s poster and special celebratory stamps. His artwork won no fewer than three Olympic Gold medals, which until 1952 were also awarded for paintings, sculpture, architecture, literature and music inspired by sport.

Diggelmann is also the designer of the UEFA Cup trophy, now awarded to the winners of the UEFA Europa League, which weighs 15kg and, unusually, has no handles.

Carl Moos designed this final example which has been estimated to fetch £15,000-£20,000 at auction this week.

Born in Munich in 1878, Carl Moos moved to Zurich in 1916, creating striking posters advertising resorts ranging from Davos to St. Moritz. In 1928 his work promoting the country’s winter Olympics received a silver medal, awarded for stylised lithographs such as the example above, now considered a classic Moos design.

View the e-catalogue here

Catch us if you can on Tuesday 10th January where Nicky will be hosting a talk on how she creates beautiful chalet interiors during the Christies Late’s programme in South Kensington. Link here.

Nicky’s World – January 2017