POSTERS PROMOTING aspects of the country’s development exhort the public to vote Mapai.
(photo credit: BERL KATZNELSON FOUNDATION)
On the occasion of the 70th anniversary of the State of Israel and the 50th anniversary of Israel’s Labor Party, the Berl Katznelson Foundation recently published, The Book of Declarations of the Poalei Eretz Yisrael Party which contains 26 Mapai posters from the 1940s and 1950s. Most of the posters shown in the book were created to express praise in the construction, defense and immigration activities carried out by the ruling Mapai Party. They were hung up on billboards in the cities, kibbutzim and moshavim, as well as at bus stops. Posters played an important role in shaping public opinion and mobilizing voters before elections, especially Israel’s first Knesset elections in 1948, 1951 and 1955. Prominent illustrators and graphic designers were engaged – the brothers Gabriel and Maxim Shamir were hired to create the Israel Coat of Arms, and Otte Wallish was responsible for the calligraphy and design of the scroll for Israel’s Declaration of Independence and the country’s first postage stamps.