Glaring Empty Spot on Your Wall? Get One of These Vintage Posters

I just moved into a perfectly clean, white-walled room—and with those white walls, I’ve been inspired to update my wall art. So far, I’ve purchased a few smaller photo prints, including this one, from See in Black and this one by Payton Fulford. They’ll join a few prints I’ve had stored away for ages, due to lack of open wall space in my last apartment—but now I need some larger pieces to fill the immense whitespace.

Now my new obsession is digging around on the furniture site Chairish for a large vintage poster to complete my collection—maybe something abstract, yet not too out there (“Vintage art posters” is surprisingly not a particularly rewarding Google search). I started with some low-hanging fruit, like Andy Warhol—mainly because his prints are absolutely everywhere, and I wanted to check the authenticity of the results. Shockingly, there were a lot of genuine first-edition prints—the first print production of the art, based on the original piece—ranging all the way from 1960-2010.

The nice thing about art posters is they can be more affordable depending on the edition of the print: The first is more expensive than the fifth—and more likely to actually increase in value. That means owning a first-edition print from a heavy hitter like Andy Warhol is totally achievable. If you’re not looking to make an investment at this particular moment, I’ve also included some picks under $100.

I’m sure I’m not the only one responding to some serious nesting urges. Here’s my path to better, more beautiful walls.

Heavy Hitters

These include some of the Andy Warhol lithographs and first-editions that lit up my initial search.

A personal favorite from Andy: a 1993 collector’s edition lithograph print of Grace Jones from 1968… that wasn’t quite what I wanted for my space.

I bet you never thought you’d own a Matisse, did you? (I did not).

Or something from retro king Peter Max?

It wouldn’t be a “heavy hitters” section without a little something from ’80s icon Keith Haring.

Or NYC native, Jean-Michel Basquiat.

Then a few popular goodies that will lead to amazing “similar results” sections.

At this point, I’m feeling a little more confident with the search bar and decide to search for magazine cover art, couture poster art, or anything fashion related.

Fashion Influenced

Let’s all be little French dolls with these 1930s Vogue posters.

What was that? You’d like to see some vintage covers from Harper’s Bazaar also? No problem.

Or some new wave beauties from Fiorucci that I should probably already own but don’t. Bookmarking these for later…

Suddenly I’m bookmarking and saving handfuls of posters, but nothing that really sticks out for my space yet. On the other hand, I am really gravitating toward the pieces that involve typography in some aspect.

Odds n Ends

Under $100

Exhibition posters for already well-known artists feel just about right.

These retro advertisements are actual pieces of ART.

Here, some contemporary pieces that make me want to scream from the rooftops… but that wouldn’t really work in my space.

Montreal Olympics posters from the 1970s made me realize how much I miss watching the Olympics—and once again how good type is on a retro poster.

After a thorough search, I realize the ones that really resonate are the museum exhibition announcement posters. I love the mix of imagery with text—the fact that they’re advertisements for an actual artist makes them extra special. I haven’t quite landed on one yet, but I love them all. What do you recommend?

Lorenza Centi

Lorenza is an art director/designer by day and also by night.

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