April 18, 2007

Long Live The Glorious Chinese Propaganda Poster-Themed Nursery!

I don't remember exactly how I got on this Chinese kick, but now I feel like I'm on a long march to a cultural revolution in kidspace design. DT reader Mark pointed me to 1930 Shanghai and More, a hotbed of Commie art and antiques located in--where else?--Berkeley, California.

In addition to dozens of different Chubby Baby New Year posters [linked previously], there are some sweet finds:

One Child Policy Posters
This 1973 poster is from before the OCP was enforced. The slogan says, "For Revolution, implement late marriage policy". [$89]


Here's what you got in Hebei Province if you stuck to the OCP. It's got kind of a happy, smiling, multi-ethnic "It's a Small Hebei After All" theme. [$40]

Chinese Kids
A lot of these were meant as kindergarten and elementary classroom decorations.

This one's small, 15x20, but the poem is kind of awesome, in a "we showed those consumerist bastards, didn't we, comrade?" kind of way: "[It] says that one should inherit the Red Army soldier’s ways by not throwing away things when one could fix it." Indeed. [$39]


Here's one with a little child rainbow of China's international friends [seriously, I think that African kid is indigo, $49]. This kid playing blocks is a bit too awkwardly realistic for me, but at least she has a Dalian Matchbox car [$40].

Next up, a Chinese Mary Blair and a nod to Kubrick...

These two are really incredible, though, with a simplified, stylized 60's vibe that really feels like Disney artist extraordinaire Mary Blair. They're also rare, apparently, for their lack of political content.

The first is about learning to count and use Pin Yin, the mainland pronunciation system [$38], and the second is about how glorious good hygiene and brushing your teeth can be [$59].



Oh wait, there's one more thing. Chubby Baby cannot soak in the Motherland's greatness by posters alone. The last thing you need [and you can read that any way you like] is the 1950's Great Leap Forward commemorative porcelain figurines of Comrades riding a rocket, Major Kong-style [though Dr. Strangelove wouldn't appear until 1964], holding aloft a banner that says, "China Exceed US and UK".

1930shanghai_strangelove.jpg major_kong_bomb.jpg

Possibly the best extra $209 you will ever spend. [all images via 1930shanghai.com]

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