Agua De Vilajuiga
Agua De Vilajuiga
(98cm x 138cm)
Agua De Vilajuiga is a c. 1915 advertisement for the Spanish mineral water company by renowned poster artist, Leonetto Cappiello. The Aigua de Vilajuiga Company was founded in 1904 by six local Catalonian families. The water is sourced from the Cap de Creus Natural Park, located nearby where the Pyrenees Mountains meet the Mediterranean Sea. The area is unique due to the Tramontane winds which shape the landscape and affect the minerals. As rain water passes through the subsoil, it is purified and absorbs precious minerals including magnesium, calcium and bicarbonates. The sparkling mineral water is known for containing "needle point" bubbles, known as "aguja", which offer a more full bodied creamy taste.
Agua De Vilajuiga is often advertised as "medicinal" due to the absence of micro-organisms, and the combination of bicarbonates, calcium, and sodium chloride among other minerals. The poster advertises "For the Stomach, Kidneys, and Liver. Delicious for the table, and most rich in Lithium." Lithium was believed to be a healthy metal found in mineral water. Aigua de Vilajuïga was Salvador Dali's favorite beverage. The artist vacationed nearby and had a close relationship with the owners. His moustache appears as a design motif on every bottle of Vilajuïga.
Leonetto Cappiello (1875-1942) was an Italian poster artist who worked in Paris. He is known for modernizing advertising design for the 20th Century. His compositions are uncomplicated and often feature a graceful figure with an oversized rendition of the product against a simple color background. The typography is often minimalized to be as direct and short as possible. This innovation allowed for the advertising to be eye-catching and understood at a moments' glance. It was ideal for the fast paced travel and attention of busy city life.
Cappiello began his career as a caricaturist for the humor magazine, Le Rire, among others. He had early success in the industry but turned his attention to poster designs in 1905. In the earlier part of his career, Cappiello worked directly with the printer, Pierre Vercasson, who also acted as the artist's agent developing clients and facilitating the printing of the final poster.
In 1921, Cappiello entered into an exclusive contract with the Paris printer, Devambez. The relationship proved a commercial success for Cappiello. He designed some of his most iconic imagery for Devambez, who spread his advertising artwork across Europe. The relationship lasted until 1936. Cappiello's career remained highly productive throughout his lifetime and resulted in his producing over 530 advertising posters that changed the art direction of the industry.
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