Unknown

1929 Original Motivational Poster, Let's Clear the Air, Mather Work Incentive

$2,650.00
  • 1929 Original Motivational Poster, Let's Clear the Air, Mather Work Incentive

Unknown

1929 Original Motivational Poster, Let's Clear the Air, Mather Work Incentive

$2,650.00

Date: 1929
Size: 36.25 x 44 inches
Artist: Unknown

About the Poster: Printed in Chicago as part of the Mather Work Incentive series, this motivational poster shows a rainbow shooting through the sky after a rainy morning, demonstrating how beauty and peace can follow troubled times.

About vintage motivational posters:  "Today’s business motivational posters are the butt of many a joke. But back in your grandpa’s day, they were an art form. Not only that, but motivational posters from the first few decades of the 20th century provide a window into America’s changing idea of manhood.

During the late 19th and early 20th centuries, rapid industrialization in the West transformed all aspects of life, including our concept of manliness. ...(A)s factories and industrial farming put small artisans and independent farmers out of business, men began leaving the family farm and shop in search for work in the burgeoning urban centers of America. ... But as factories and industrial farming put small artisans and independent farmers out of business, men began leaving the family farm and shop in search for work in the burgeoning urban centers of America... a new archetype took center stage during this time of rapid change: The Self-Made Man.

(This) archetype of manliness represented a profound change in how Americans saw manhood. This was when the “pull yourself up by your bootstraps” ideal really took root in the country. Young men who wanted to be a success could no longer hang around the family farm and wait to inherit a piece of land from their fathers or apprentice at the village tannery before opening their own shop. Opportunities were waiting in new businesses and in new places far from home. But to grasp these opportunities required a new set of skills — while their fathers had wrestled with external obstacles in struggling to tame the land, young men looked inward and sought to master themselves. “Harder” skills became less important than personal qualities like thrift, hard work, persistence, and reliability. 

The Great Depression dealt a serious, if temporary, blow to the Self-Made Man archetype. With the crash in the market, and consequently in morale, the motivational craze fizzled, and the posters produced by Parker-Holladay and Mather & Co. became tattered ephemera that collected dust in antique stores and attics. Recently, however, there’s been a renewed interest in these unique pieces of 20th century history. Traveling exhibitions containing these vintage posters have criss-crossed the country and auction houses are selling them for thousands of dollars." (Excerpted from a wonderful article that can be found at https://www.artofmanliness.com/articles/vintage-business-motivational-posters-from-the-1920s-1930s/) 

This series is very well known, and has been the subject of numerous exhibitions and even a segment on the Antiques Roadshow! Our poster is in excellent condition, with two punched holes at top. Recently linen-backed, it is ready to be framed and would brighten up any home or workplace!In very good condition, linen backed and ready to frame. Rare.