Collecting Vintage Tennis Posters

There are several notable reasons why people collect tennis posters.  First and foremost, collectors of these pieces are driven by their love of the game. Within that passion, there are more focused areas of interest, including images of action, competition, fashion, equipment and destination. 

Vintage Tennis Posters: Game Play

Many tennis posters are very action-oriented, depicting the players engaged in the sport in a dynamic composition. Some of these examples aim to advertise commercial products, while others promote specific tennis tournaments, which, from a sports history perspective, are quite desirable.  

Vintage Tennis Tournament Posters

Tennis Fashion

The transformation of athletic attire over the last century of tennis is a constant source of interest and pleasure for modern-day tennis and fashion enthusiasts. From the impractical, lengthy skirts and puffed sleeves of the late nineteenth century to the Art Deco stylization of the 1920s, these posters wonderfully illustrate people enjoying the game across the decades. This category includes advertisements for sporting goods and clothing stores and wonderful imagery of the sporting equipment. 

René Vincent & Meulemans, Maxons’s Baby Blanc, circa 1930s-40s.
Charles E. Chambers, Chesterfield / …On the Court It’s Flash!, circa 1930.

Famous Venus & Resorts

Primary among the most sought-after tennis images are travel posters that promote prominent venues, luxurious destinations and famous resorts where tennis is the main attraction. 

Cool by Association

Many posters that involve tennis imagery have no direct connection to the sport at all. In order to advertise their wares, these companies make an association between a stylish pastime and the products being sold. These commissions include advertisements for drinks, shoes, bicycles, clothing, cigarettes, motorcycles and magazines.  

Considering the wide variety in aesthetics, subjects, and historical import of tennis posters, it is no wonder they are eagerly sought after at auction.