Africans Used These Hand-Painted Hollywood Movie Posters, And They’re So Bad, They’re Good

Published 6 years ago

During the military dictatorships of the 1970s and ’80s, a restrictive law occurred cutting off the importation of the large-scale offset printing presses. Usually, these type of prints were used for posters and ads. Due to this law, African artists were asked to paint Hollywood movie posters, making them look as creative and exciting as possible, regardless of plot. Most of the time, artists hadn’t even seen the movies.

The majority of these unique art pieces come from Ghana. The main goal was to sell as many tickets as possible, “If the movie was gory, the poster should be gorier (skulls, blood, skulls dripping blood). If it was sexy, make the poster sexier (breasts, lots of them, ideally at least watermelon-sized)”, one of the artists Frank Armah told The Atlantic.

When it comes to restrictions, there actually wasn’t any except the size of the canvas, they had to fit on one side of a 50kg flour bag or two sides stitched together. Unfortunately, the current situation is far different from what it was before since at the moment these posters have become incredibly expensive art pieces, and their price can go up to $15.000. As the new global market opened, local artists started to create these posters anew.


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Rugile Matuseviciute

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