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Steinberg Galerie Maeght Poster (1973)

Saul Steinberg


This poster promotes a show of Saul Steinberg’s work that took place in Paris in the fall of 1973 at Galerie Maeght—long his gallerist in France. Steinberg’s poster pairs an ambiguous scene of figures in a barren landscape with an example of his so-called “false documents.” These imitations of official paperwork—passports, diplomas, and more—both mimic and distort the conventions of formats that inspired them. Here, a simple certificate appears alongside the drafting tools that were presumably used to make it: ink-dipped fountain pens and a two-sided pencil. The delicate script they have produced is convincing, if unreadable, and its authority is bolstered by three stamps, which appear to certify both the certificate and the poster itself. Steinberg’s name appears at the top of the sheet, printed in the same upright Roman type that is used for the gallery’s name at the bottom of the page. In another context, copying the gallery’s typeface would likely come across as a sensible and unremarkable design choice, but here it can be read as yet another act of clever imitation on Steinberg’s part.

  • Manufacturer: Galerie Maeght
  • Medium:Poster
  • Dimensions:31 x 23 in. (78.7 x 58.4 cm)
  • Item:A.2019.2.1819