Last Updated on 2022/06/28
The Art of Silvano Campeggi
On 29 August died Silvano Campeggi (also known by the nickname “Nano”), painter and poster maker is known for having made Hollywood movie posters like Casablanca, Gone with the Wind, Singing in the Rain, An American in Paris, West Side Story, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Judgment at Nuremberg, Exodus and Breakfast at Tiffany.
Campeggi was 95 years old and died in San Felice a Ema, Florence, where he returned to live after spending many years in the United States.
Campeggi was born in Florence in 1923: he was the son of a typesetter and a printer, he became interested in graphic design and studied at the Porta Romana Art Institute. After his studies, he collaborated and studied with Florentine artists such as Ottone Rosai and Ardengo Soffici and during the Second World War, he worked for the American Red Cross, making portraits of the soldiers before they returned home. After the war, he went to live in Rome and made the first posters: the first was the one for the film Black Eagle, 1946.
A few years ago, interviewed by the Italian newspaper Il Giornale, he said: “In the golden days of cinema I have come to make more than 150 [posters] a year, practically one every two days. Metro never printed less than 12,000 copies. But for the blockbusters, they made more than 25,000 copies”. To the journalist who asked him how much he earned, he said, “I do not remember. I really mean it. It’s been more than 40 years. I only know that Ben-Hur or Tom & Jerry were paid equally “.
Campeggi designed the poster and advertising graphics for over 3000 films, working not only under contract with the MGM studios, but also with Warner Brothers, United Artists, RKO, Twentieth-Century Fox, Paramount, Universal, Columbia Pictures, and several others. Sixty-four of the films he illustrated won Oscars, including Casablanca, Ben-Hur, Singin’ in the Rain, An American in Paris, West Side Story, Exodus, and Breakfast at Tiffany’s.
Source: Il Post
Matteo Damiani is an Italian sinologist, photographer, author and motion designer. Matteo lived and worked for ten years in China. Founder of CinaOggi.it, China-underground.com, Weirditaly.com and RetroFuturista.com.