World War II Russian propaganda posters to be on display at Luther Oct. 19-Jan. 20

An exhibit of reprinted Soviet propaganda posters from World War II, donated by Luther Professor Emeritus Richard Cole, will be on display on the main level in Preus Library Oct. 19-Jan. 20.

Luther College student Clara Bergan, class of 2013, will curate the exhibition. After graduating from Decorah High School in 2010, she came to Luther to major in environmental studies with a policy concentration.

The posters on display represent only a small sample of hundreds created to advance the war efforts and strengthen support on the Soviet home front.  Cole purchased these posters in 1975 in Leningrad (now St. Petersburg) as part of the 30-year anniversary of Soviet victory over Germany. Used to educate and influence, propaganda was used to mobilize entire nations on all sides during World War II.

Bergan acknowledges that the efforts of Soviet artists mark a significant period in graphic design and poster art. She hopes to emphasize the significance of propaganda in appealing to all members of the population to mobilize entire nations.

Her exhibition is part of an inaugural series of student-curated exhibitions at Luther College that will take place this year, culminating with a Barbizon print show in the college’s Wigley Fleming Gallery in February and March.