Poster Tales is a series of Israeli-made posters that originated with the founding of the Jewish state. Each year, Israeli artists submit their posters and designs in the hope that one will be featured as Israel's Independence Day image. Each poster – with its vivid imagery, symbols and themes – encapsulates a time and a people that shows the progression of Israel through the decades. Below is a tiny taste of what the curriculum comprises, and an example lesson plan for tailoring the resource to other holidays as well.
The first Independence Day poster. Designed by Yohanan Simon.
Two strong arms raising the Israeli flag, depicted in a Soviet socialistic realistic style, is accompanied by a quote taken directly from the Declaration of Independence.
- What do the lines on the flagpole represent?
- What's the light and dark contrast symbolize?
- What, in your opinion, is the prominant message being displayed?
Artist: Gidi Keich
This poster has many layers and symbols, and is a great representation of how "old meets new" in Jerusalem. The fort-like structure is built from twelve stones, representing the twelve tribes. The seven flags waving in the wind represent the years since Israel's independence. What else do you see?
Artist: Amram Peret
Isaiah (2:1-4): "They will beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation will not take up sword against nation, nor will they train for war anymore."
A traditional joyful child in a traditional kova tembel (כובע טמבל, traditional Israeli hat) waters a helmet that is growing a garden. Notice anything different about the colors and flag? We encourage you to dig a little deeper with this Poster Tale.
Artist: Studio Tornovsky
One of the most popular posters of its time, this compilation of portraits was created by children. It demonstrates Israel's diversity through the eyes of its future generations. What other elements stand out to you?
Artist: Gideon Sagi
(Other posters by Gideon include 1980, 1982, and 1997)
Notice how the number 37 repeats in pattern and overlaps in color.
- What is the artist trying to say with this visual style?
- In what other ways is the number 7 suggested?
- What hidden shapes and symbols are apparent?
Drawing Comparisons: 1978 & 2002
Compare the two posters below. 24 years apart, and they both represent a similar style and theme.
- How do they differ?
- How do they relate to the years they are released?
- What symbolism shines through brightest?
Yom Yerushalayim Sample Lesson
Designed for Israel’s Independence Day throughout the years, these historical and contemporary posters offer a rare perspective into Israel’s national mood and aspirations. They reflect on the struggles, values and ideals of Israeli society.
This is a sample lesson for Yom Yerushalayim. This program can be used in many ways depending on the classroom setup, the goals, and the allotted time.
For more information on the entire Poster Tales curriculum, please contact Ilan Vitemberg.
The Poster Tales curriculum is presented by the Israel Education Initiative of the San Francisco-based Bureau of Jewish Education in collaboration with The Israel Center of the San Francisco-based Jewish Community Federation, Consulate General of Israel of the Pacific Northwest, and MAKOM Israel Engagement Network of JAFI
(Disclaimer: The above images are owned and copywritten by the Government of Israel. The iCenter acts as a distributor to the Poster Tales curriculum, but makes no claims of copyright on the above images.)