Japan Vintage Posters – As we’re adapting to the changes happening all around the world, we’re also making peace with ourselves about how the future will look in all aspects. To bring some comfort to our lives, we’re throwing back to the past; items that have transcended times, music that has survived the long years, memories that will be around forever.
Nostalgia is a powerful emotion, and whilst it involves the past, it is indeed a strong reminder that nothing lasts forever, but many things will last a long time.
In Japan, nostalgia and advancement go hand in hand.
In a country where modernism and tradition have coexisted for decades, it’s so very easy to fall in love with the high-rise buildings, bright neon billboard signs that light up the crowded streets and crossings of the city; it’s also equally as easy to fall head over heels in love with the bamboo rainforests, the country highways that stretch for miles with nothing but mountains and sky in the distance, and the peaceful rivers and lakes.
Culture and tradition in Japan is alive and thriving. It’s what makes the country so appealing to foreigners and sets it apart from many others.
Whilst you’re at home, faithfully planning your next trip to Japan, why not bring a slice of nostalgic Japan to your doorstep?
One thing that many Japan enthusiasts have found to appease their appetite for traversing the awesome country is hanging gorgeous vintage posters of Japan in their homes. The old-school style artwork of these posters combined with the distinct colours used in that era make for some awesome pieces for any home!
We have a range of vintage posters set up on our website which depict all elements of Japan: from nature in Japan to vintage sake advertisements from the past.
Have a look at our current posters for sale!
1. Umegatani Sake Ad Poster – Released in 1962 Featuring Sumo Wrestlers
Everything about this poster screams ‘vintage Japan’. It features the super popular sake brand Umegatani, which originates from Fukuoka City. Sumo wrestlers, who were known to be heavyweight sake drinkers, are holding a massive bottle of Umegatani.
This poster would be a great additional to a lounge or sitting room, where it will no doubt spark many conversations.
2. Nippon Shuzo Sake Ad Poster Released In The 1920s
This gorgeous poster features a young beautiful Japanese woman holding up a bottle of Nippon Shuzo. This famous sake brand was founded in Kobe, and in the 1920s, this poster was released to further promote the drink.
The Japanese woman is dressed in a lovely colourful kimono, with her hair adorned with ornaments, holding up the bottle of Nippon Shuzo. The text “Kimi Banzai” on the bottle label is a paean to the Emperor of Japan.
Get It Here: Nippon Shuzo Sake Ad Poster Released In The 1920s
3. Mothra Vs. Godzilla (1964) Vintage Movie Poster – Japan Edition
Movie enthusiasts, vintage geeks, collectors – this is a poster you can’t let slip through your fingers!
Mothra Vs. Godzilla is one of the most classic Japanese movies, which was released in 1964. The movie was a major success in Japan as well as in international theatres, and is still a defining moment in Japanese cinema today.
Read more: The 10 Best Japanese Movie Directors
This is the original design of the poster that the public went gangbusters over. It features super nostalgic artwork of Mothra and Godzilla with bright and brilliant colours and a flashy red logo.
The perfect addition to add some character to your living or working space.
Get It Here: Mothra Vs. Godzilla (1964) Vintage Movie Poster
4. Moonraker (1979) James Bond 007 Movie Poster – Japan Edition
This Japanese take on the 1979 James Bond movie Moonraker is an absolute gem!
The artistic direction of this poster is about as Japanese as it gets; Roger Moore, the then James Bond, is given a vintage Japanese anime makeover. Side characters and the insides of a spaceship are also featured on this poster.
This poster would look great in a media room or similar!
5. Japan Vintage Travel Poster | Kirishima, Kagoshima Prefecture, Retreat of Spirits By Japanese Rail (1930)
It’s awesome to see how tourism ads have changed over time, and Japanese tourism is no different.
This travel poster, which was released by the Japanese Rail Agency back in the 1930s, was part of the promotions to attract tourists to Kirishima, a beautiful and peaceful volcanic area in the Kagoshima Prefecture.
The Zen colours and design of this poster will make a great addition to a relaxing living area.
6. Kirin Beer Ad Poster Released in 1939
If you’re seeing this poster for the first time, it may seem a little nostalgic, as though you’ve seen it before. If you’re nodding your head, then you’re not alone!
This poster, whilst having no affiliation to the poster that’s no doubt in your mind, is quite reminiscent of the famous ‘Rosie the Riveter’ poster, the US propaganda poster of a woman in a red bandana flexing her muscles – the latter, however, was released a few years later.
This Kirin beer ad features a young girl, dressed in a simple floral top, hosting a Kirin beer bottle over her shoulders. If you’re reading this, you would know that Kirin is one of the top beer brands across Japan, and has been for many decades!
As this poster was released during the wartimes in Japan, you can make out the shadow of the girl as a soldier holding a rifle. Quite creative!
Get It Here: Kirin Beer Ad Poster Release in 1939
7. Japan Vintage Travel Poster To Promote Autumn In Nikko (Released in 1930)
Honestly, vintage Japan travel posters are a whole different vibe!
In this travel poster, you can see two young beautiful ladies dressed in pastel coloured kimonos staring at the beautiful scenery.
This poster was created by the Japan Travel Bureau (JTB), which was and still is the biggest travel agency in Japan, to promote the beautiful autumn season in Nikko.
Even though the poster was released more than 90 years ago, the beauty of Nikko is timeless, as is captured by the bright orange and fiery red colours of the leaves in the poster.
We have travelled to Nikko ourselves and can attest to breathtaking scenery there in autumn.
8. Japan Vintage Travel Poster Promoting Summer At Miho Peninsula | By Nagoya Rail Agency (1930)
The difference in seasons in Japan are part of what makes the country so special; every change of season is unique and calls for celebration across the country through festivities.
Throughout the years, Japanese tourism has always placed heavy emphasis on holidaying in certain parts of Japan during certain seasons, as is the case with this unique vintage Japanese travel poster which was released in 1930.
This poster, created by the Nagoya Rail Agency, was part of the promotions to encourage people to visit Miho Peninsula, also known as Miho no Matsubara, during summer. This destination, located in the Shizuoka prefecture, is a gorgeous coastal area that’s still popular today!
9. Japan Vintage Poster Featuring A Pagoda And Sakura – By Japanese Government Railways (1937)
It will take extreme willpower to pass by this beautiful vintage poster featuring a stunning pagoda and cherry blossoms.
This vintage poster was released in the 1930s as part of the promotions by the Japanese Government Railways to encourage people to take the train and visit different locations in the country during the spring season.
There is not one area in Japan that is “the best” cherry blossom spot; in fact, you’ll probably have close to 100 different cherry blossoms spots around Japan vying for that position! This is why traveling around the country via train (the most efficient form of transport, in our humble opinion!), during springtime is the perfect promotion campaign.
This poster, whilst it does contain hints of nostalgia, can easily pass as an aesthetic promotional poster today!
10. Gekkeikan Sake Ad Poster Released in 1935 Featuring Japanese Woman Wearing Colourful Kimono
Geikkeikan is one of the original sake brands, founded all the way back in 1637! Not only that, it is produced in the nostalgic city of Kyoto within its Fushimi district.
As such, it is very fitting that a poster promoting this age-old sake brand is super nostalgic and vintage itself!
This poster features a beautiful young woman wearing a bright gold kimono. The gorgeous hue of the kimono matches the sunset in the distance at which she is staring at. Whilst not overtly selling the product, this poster utilises more of an emotional marketing technique.
BONUS Japan Vintage Poster: Red Leaves at Yunoyama Onsen by Osaka and Nagoya Rail Agency (1930)
The bright and fiery colours used in this poster are 100% promoting the autumn season of Japan, which is a major attraction to the country in itself.
Just like the famous cherry blossoms season (although maybe not as popular), the autumn koyo season is a great time for international and domestic tourists alike to traverse the country seeking beautiful scenery created by nature itself.
In 1930, Osaka and Nagoya Rail Agency released this stunning poster to promote Yunoyama Onsen, a quiet and picturesque onsen town located in Mie Prefecture. As you can see through this poster, it’s at its peak beauty during autumn.
These Japan vintage posters are all so beautiful and unique, it will be very hard to pick just one to show off! From the breathtaking countryside to Japan, to the vibrance of Japanese movie advertisements, these posters will create waves of conversation with whoever sees them.
If you’re looking to add some character, nostalgia, and timeless beauty to your home, look at purchasing one of these vintage Japanese posters.