Arts festivals across the country often advertise themselves with collectible posters. Some festivals hire an advertising agency to design their poster. Others commission the prior year’s Best of Show winner to do an illustration for their poster. The Central Pennsylvania Festival of the Arts does things a bit differently.
Our posters are unusual in that they’re the work of one man. For more than 40 years Lanny Sommese, distinguished professor emeritus of visual arts in Penn State’s Stuckeman School of Visual Arts, has designed the Festival’s poster. Although Sommese retired from Penn State in the spring of 2014, he has no plans to retire from designing the Festival’s annual poster.
This year, Lanny designed the poster with a partner: his daughter Saige. Saige is a 2018 graduate of Penn State’s graphic design program. Graphic design is the family business–Saige’s mother, Kristin Sommese also teaches design at Penn State.
The 2018 poster features the Festival’s first female jester standing in front of an orange and pink field. Elements symbolizing art and music float in the background. For those who like to color, our jester is ready to meet your colored pencils.
See also Festival Posters Tell Stories Too.
A full set of Sommese’s Arts Festival posters is on display in the HUB-Robeson Center on Penn State’s University Park campus.