Partner Gallery Interview: Plakat

Meet Paul Bijaoui, Founder of Plakat, a publishing house and art gallery specializing in movie posters made in collaboration with artists.

· Art Market

Plakat is a publishing house specializing in cinema, what led you to undertake this original project?

The impetus for Plakat was seeing wall decorations lose their originality to the point that they no longer represent their buyers. It was motivated by my passion for both cinema and movie posters, which in the case of Plakat translates into original creations based on a popular topic that evokes real emotion.

Paul Bijaoui, holding a poster of the film Le Mépris from Jean-Luc Godard, designed by Hippolyte Jacquet

As both a young publishing house and a next generation gallery, what has been the biggest challenge that you’ve faced, and how did you overcome it?

All of our works are verified by the official stamp of production houses, directors and actors. As a result, the legal aspect of our work was very difficult at the start. However, thanks to our catalogue of works, our network and our experience, it has become easier. Working with official stamps and offering only limited editions give a unique value to our creation that is recognized by professionals and the public.

How do you choose your artists and the film posters that you revisit? Do you give total free rein to the artists?

Our job as editor is to find the right artist for the selected movie. Whether we are working with an internationally renowned artist or a young talent, we require them to cover some specific aspects of the film. To that end, our artistic director adds a creative brief and precise constraints.

The artist then has the freedom to create proposals and we work together towards the final result.

Paris, Texas / Sunset, 2019, Dan McCarthy

Paris, Texas / Sunset, 2019, Dan McCarthy

Why choose the medium of printing, and more precisely silkscreen printing? Can you imagine diversifying to other mediums in the long run?

Silkscreen printing gives a magical finish when you hold it in your hands: the depth of the colors, the textures, the gradations, the power of the flat tints... Nowadays, digital printing renders these features unattainable. We consider our printer an artist.

From the preparation of the colors "to the naked eye" to the physical effort that a print represents, it’s a noble craft with an exceptional precision that we take enjoyment in introducing to people.

We have made smaller prints in risography, which give a different yet equally interesting finish. Nevertheless, our speciality remains silkscreen printing, a fascinating medium that we have not yet finished exploring.

Details of the poster of La Piscine, a film by Jacques Deray, designed by Laurent Durieux

La Piscine, 2019, Laurent Durieux

What are your projects at the moment or to come? How do you see the growth of Plakat in the coming years?

We keep working on original creations focused on the cinematic art. The idea of course is to expand our catalogue as ideas and films do not lack! We wish to become a major international reference in terms of artistic creation.

We are considering opening our catalogue to sectors outside of cinema, by remaining in the illustration sector and maintaining an extremely high level of quality for all our products.

What communication strategy do you use for reaching out simultaneously to young collectors, art lovers and cinephiles?

Film posters used to be iconic objects. Unfortunately, they have lost their former glory over time. Now, the advertising message has taken priority over aesthetics. Movie posters are often poor-quality photomontages that leave no room for imagination.

At Plakat, we do the exact opposite and try to restore this lost artform to its former glory by designing a unique and exclusive product.

Paying tribute to ancient masterpieces by integrating modern graphic codes to arouse new emotion... This is the goal for each one of our editions!

Poster of Mommy, a film by Xavier Dolan, designed by Jeremy Enecio

Mommy - Regular, 2018, Jeremy Enecio

How can online sales be a support for art galleries, especially in these difficult times? How does Artsper help you on a daily basis?

Selling art online is undeniably a great way to allow the greatest number of people to discover artworks and artists especially in this difficult period where exhibitions, fairs and other shows are being cancelled. This is even more relevant since feeling good at home, surrounded by works that inspire us, has become essential for each of us.

Thanks to the quality of its selections and a particularly good user experience, Artsper allows us to gain international visibility, which would have taken much longer a few years ago without the existence of this type of platform!

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