Posters + photos

DE_Berlin_1978_05_11_Konzert_John_Tchicai_FMPIn 2015 the Jazzinstitut will present parts of its poster collection to the public.

It took a while, but with the help of our volunteer Rolf Schäfer we finally managed to digitize most of the posters archived in our collection and enter them into a database.

The poster collection at the Jazzinstitut Darmstadt comprises around 2,000 prints/sheets from all around the world, however with a clear focus on Germany and Europe after 1945. More than 500 of these posters document jazz life in Darmstadt, Frankfurt and the Rhein-Main region.

There are posters designed by well-known artists, posters with an innovative design, whole festival series of posters, posters for clubs, record label editions and many other examples for the genre, documenting a rich and lively jazz scene. The design approach varies over the decades; it documents changes both in design taste and trends, but also changes in the music and the music’s aesthetic perception.

Jazz posters sometimes are artists’ posters, most of all, though, they are advertising art, a fact which makes even a seemingly non-designed cardboard used by a club to inform their clientele of the necessary concert dates a sociological sample of this specific jazz scene.

Our photo collection comprises more than 40,000 prints from the early days of jazz up until yesterday, with more recent pictures mostly present in digital formats. Many of the historic photographs in our collection were handed down to us from Joachim Ernst Berendt; others came directly from photographers. All photos are liable to copyright; permission from the original photographer or his or her legal successors is necessary. For some of the collections (for instance photos by Hanns E. Haehl) all rights of use are held by the Jazzinstitut. Whatever photos you might need, feel free to contact us to learn about the conditions under which we might grant you access to some of the photos from our archive.