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Magazine ad, Kaufen Sie diesen Wagen nicht!, 1960
Gerstner + KutterKarl Gerstner
Magazine ad, Kaufen Sie diesen Wagen nicht!
Gerstner + Kutter, Karl Gerstner,

Magazine ad, Kaufen Sie diesen Wagen nicht!,
1960

Gerstner + KutterKarl Gerstner
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Museum für Gestaltung Zürich
Ausstellungsstrasse 60
8031 Zurich
Museum map
Museum für Gestaltung Zürich
Toni-Areal, Pfingstweidstrasse 94
8031 Zurich
  • Kaufen Sie diesen Wagen nicht! Gerstner + Kutter Karl Gerstner Magazine ad
  • Kaufen Sie diesen Wagen nicht! Gerstner + Kutter Karl Gerstner Magazine ad
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Ever since it was founded, in 1959, the Basel advertising agency Gerstner + Kutter has attracted attention with its exceptional advertising campaigns. In a series of advertisements from 1960 for the Zurich car dealership C. Schlotterbeck, the Citroën 2 CV was advertised with negative headlines like “Don’t buy this car!” accentuated with ironic and humorous captions accompanying the images.

The innovative advertising campaigns by the Basel agency Gerstner + Kutter, headed by the graphic designer Karl Gerstner (1930–2017) and the copywriter Markus Kutter (1925–2005), attracted first local and then international attention. The firm’s very first advertising commissions, which came from the duo’s circle of acquaintances, already revealed extraordinary approaches. For example, the campaign for the reopening of the Rheinbrücke department store in Basel visualized a virtual dialogue between a customer and the Rhine bridge (Rheinbrücke). Even more daring was an advertising campaign for the Zurich car dealership C. Schlotterbeck featuring the legendary Citroën 2 CV, which appeared in the daily press. Kutter used negative headlines throughout, juxtaposed with corresponding visual irony generated by his colleague Gerstner. The headlines of this four-part series were summarized in the last advertisement. They read: “Don’t look!”, “Don’t get in!”, “Don’t take a test drive!”, and at the very end, big and bold, “Don’t buy this car!” Beneath this, written in lowercase letters, were the words: “… if you don’t expect something new from a car.” Then, paradoxically, the advantages of a small car were listed, while beneath this a black bar almost completely obscured the depicted 2 CV, thus ostensibly discouraging the readership from purchasing the vehicle. The extensive photographs that Kutter organized for the casting were produced by Gerstner. The client seemed to approve of the witty and flippant campaign. In any event, the duo became an overnight sensation. (Barbara Junod)

Werbeinserat, Kaufen Sie diesen Wagen nicht!, 1960
Gestaltung: Gerstner + Kutter, Basel, CH / Karl Gerstner
Text: Gerstner + Kutter, Basel, CH / Markus Kutter
Auftrag: C. Schlotterbeck Automobile AG, Zürich, CH
Material/Technik: Papier, Andruck
34.9 x 49.8 cm
Donation: Gerstner, Gredinger + Kutter, Werbeagentur AG, Basel, CH
Eigentum: Museum für Gestaltung Zürich / ZHdK
Literatureo

Richard Hollis, Schweizer Grafik. Die Entwicklung eines internationalen Stils. 1920–1965, Basel/Boston/Berlin 2006, S. 182–183, 229–232.

Manfred Kröplien (Hg.), Karl Gerstner. Rückblick auf 5 x 10 Jahre Graphik Design etc., Ostfildern-Ruit 2001, insbesondere S. 12–15, 54–55, 56–57.

Karl Gerstner, Programme entwerfen, Teufen 1964, S. 58, 74.

Hans Neuburg, «Neuzeitliche Werbegrafik als Einheit von Idee, Text und Form», in: Neue Grafik/New Graphic Design/Graphisme actuel 6 (1960), S. 26–27.

Image creditso

Werbeinserat, Kaufen Sie diesen Wagen nicht!, 1960, Gestaltung: Karl Gerstner, Text: Markus Kutter, Donation: Gerstner, Gredinger + Kutter, Werbeagentur AG, Basel, CH
Abbildung: Museum für Gestaltung Zürich / ZHdK

Werbeinserat, Steigen Sie nicht ein!, 1960, Gestaltung: Karl Gerstner, Text: Markus Kutter, Donation: Gerstner, Gredinger + Kutter, Werbeagentur AG, Basel, CH
Abbildung: Museum für Gestaltung Zürich / ZHdK

Werbeinserat, Schauen Sie nicht hin!, um 1960, Gestaltung: Karl Gerstner, Text: Markus Kutter, Donation: Gerstner, Gredinger + Kutter, Werbeagentur AG, Basel, CH
Abbildung: Museum für Gestaltung Zürich / ZHdK

Exhibition texto
Gerstner + Kutter – Citroën 2CV

Ever since its founding in 1959, the Basel advertising agency Gerstner + Kutter has continually raised eyebrows with its offbeat advertising campaigns. The partners are the graphic designer Karl Gerstner (1930–2017) and the historian and copywriter Markus Kutter (1925–2005), who each have equal say in the design process and productively enhance the expressiveness of word and image through their mutual input. This is what happened, for example, in the case of two ad series from 1960, which with a great deal of verbal and pictorial wit promote the Citroën 2CV, a car known in German as the “Ente,” or “duck.”