For twenty years the association 100 Beste Plakate e.V. has been spotlighting the most groundbreaking poster designs from Germany, Austria, and Switzerland. In its anniversary year, the group and its members are facing existential questions, just like graphic designers all over the world. The coronavirus has laid waste not only to people’s lives but to cultural life as well. In our day and age, museums are closed while people are still allowed to shop at DIY stores; they can get a haircut, but theaters remain off-limits. The place of culture in society is shifting, which most often means it is becoming less relevant. But what is society without culture?
Some of the posters included in this book were made for events that never happened, for billboards that remained empty, for an audience that wasn’t there.
These upheavals have had an impact not only on the selection of the 100 best posters of 2020, but also on current trends in the graphic arts. Last year, as the authorities imposed restrictions, or in some cases even outright bans, on interpersonal communication, the desire for visual communication and design seemed to grow by the same measure. This book and the posters presented in it can be regarded as a physical testimony to the time and space that was lost in 2020.