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Entrance to a museum exhibit
Entrance to a museum exhibit
Original photo by Emma Prushan
Life > Experiences

NYC’s Poster House: My New Favorite Museum

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Jefferson chapter.

On a recent trip to NYC with my program, I visited Poster House, the first museum in the United States dedicated entirely to posters. The museum has only been open for about 4 years now, but it is definitely one of the best, most unique museums I have ever been to! Since I went on a Friday, I was also able to take advantage of the free admission they offer every Friday. 

The first exhibit I visited was “Made in Japan: 20th Century Poster Art” which highlighted a collection of Japanese posters about a variety of topics, from advertising to environmental activism. I was super excited to see posters I studied in art and design history courses, including prints from the series that “The Great Wave” is a part of. My favorite part of the exhibit was definitely the design of the exhibit itself, with the patterns on the way and arrangement of the dividers mirroring the fun, blocky shapes of this era of Japanese posters. Also on this first floor was “Schoolgirls at War,” which included posters done by young girls in France during World War I. I was shocked and impressed to see the art skills of such young girls and how their work was used for wider audiences.

On the lower floor, there were two exhibits as well. The first exhibit was “With My Little Eye: Warnings from the Homefront,” full of posters from the US and Europe discouraging talk about World War II for fear of spies. Perhaps the best exhibit in the museum was “Black Power to Black People” which focused on the history and branding of the Black Panther Party. Every aspect of this exhibit was absolutely captivating! The posters and their history are divided in a way that is easy to understand and guides you through understanding the efforts and hardships of the Black Panthers. As you walk through the exhibit, music is playing, with the playlist including songs such as the Black Panther Party anthem and one of the sections including an interactive way to see all of the lyrics in the playlist. Before exiting the exhibit, you can also grab a newspaper-like publication that details the role of Black women in the designs for the Black Panthers. 

I love museums but I tend to get fatigue from looking at things in a museum for too long, so Poster House was absolutely perfect. As a graphic designer, I may have been a bit more interested in the exhibits than the average person, but the museum is interactive with immersive exhibits that anyone is sure to enjoy! The exhibits and their size are easy to consume while still being engaged and interested in what you’re seeing. The Poster House website says to plan on spending about an hour within the museum, so it is the perfect stop to add to your agenda for a New York City day if you are looking for something quick and interesting to do! I’m already trying to see when I can go back to check out the new exhibits that will be going up at the end of April!

Emma Prushan

Jefferson '25

Emma is a junior at Jefferson studying Visual Communication Design/Graphic Design. She serves as Senior Editor, Events Coordinator, and Graphic Designer of HerCampus Jefferson. In her free time, she enjoys reading, doing crafts, playing the guitar, and taking any opportunities to be creative!