Keiser's 20-odd posters for an annual Hamburg festival devoted to American folk blues always work a compelling variation of a well-worn acoustic guitar. Here, the instrument seems to be playing itself with the equally well-worn hands of a black woman. Names of featured acts are superimposed on the guitar image in type like so many familiar scratches.
Keiser's extraordinary posters are the result of creating images from solid forms, like sculpture or collage, which he then photographs. A great music lover, he was fortunate to become associated with impresarios determined to expand Germany's festivals and concerts beyond old world sounds. He more than met the challenge. Here, his photograph of an open black hand painted with bright swirls suggests the exciting, seductive rhythms of the Carnival in Rio.
In keeping with its aims of supporting and fostering the appreciation of contemporary graphics while celebrating the lithographic traditions from which these designs sprung, Poster Auctions International commissioned a series of original poster designs to commemorate their twice-yealy sales from 1992 through 1997, at which point economic realities prevailed over artistic sentiments. The participating graphic artists comprise a who's who of the world's most-distinguished posterists, and each poster is a limited-edition of 200 numbered copies-all hand-signed-on special stock. Note that the design was also printed in an edition on regular stock to be pasted on the walls of Manhattan prior to each sale. The fact that these posters were papered over or torn down only days after they went up is another reason why these are so rare. In addition to promoting the yearly spring auction, Keiser's jaunty fellow-simultaneously seen in profile and full-face-was used to create the auction company's logo.