Shouts from the Wall:
Posters and Photographs Brought Home from the Spanish Civil War by American Volunteers.

Poster showing a peasant sandal crushing a swastika
by Catala Roca

Organized by the Abraham Lincoln Brigade Archives, Shouts from the Wall is both a social history and a vivid graphic portrayal of the international struggle against fascism in Spain. Men and women from the United States and dozens of other countries volunteered to support the Spanish Republic, and the powerful posters and photographs they brought back that make up Shouts from the Wall are a unique synthesis of art, history and politics. Starting in 1936, walls in cities throughout Spain were plastered with posters calling for unity and bravery, deriding rumor-mongers and spies, and celebrating war heroes and acts of bravery. In a country with a literacy rate of 50 percent, images such as these played a vital role in conveying messages of hope and resistance.

Pictured are massive, heroic workers marching toward victory; mocking portraits of greedy capitalists, Fascists and the ruling clergy; and women, men, soldiers and laborers symbolizing solidarity in the face of vicious attacks. The posters' emphasis on strong visual statements made them a fertile medium for new ideas in graphic communication. Many used a mix of styles such as social realism and surrealism, others display an Art Nouveau flavor, while still others employed the then avant guard technique of photo-montage. The exhibition is organized in three parts: "The Struggle Against Fascism"; "Four Artists‹Sim, Bardasano, Puyol, and Renau"; and "Art and Politics."