The London mens’ clothier Austin Reed was founded in 1900 and set up shop in Regent Street in 1926 as the first men’s department store. The clothes were aimed at the upper middle class male, and the firm commissioned some of the best illustrator-designers of the day to promote its brand. The above poster, “Wagon-Lits”, is by a designer named Bomarry, about whom I can find absolutely nothing — surprising in this Age of Google.
The remaining posters presented here are from the Bristol-born Tom Purvis, one of the finest commercial artists of the twentieth century. Purvis came from an artistic family, being the son of the sailor & nautical artist T. G. Purvis. Much of his output was work for LNER — the London & North Eastern Railway — producing posters advertising the various attractions to be found along the LNER’s routes from London to Edinburgh (via York & Newcastle) and on to Aberdeen and Inverness; the railway also had an extensive coverage of East Anglia. In 1936 he was among the first to be given the title of Royal Designer for Industry, but he gave up poster design after the Second World War to concentrate on portraits and religious themes.