The Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum draws more visitors than any other museum in the world90,000 a day in the summertimeand the highlight of summer 2007 at the NASM will be “Fly Now,” the exhibit of air travel posters featured in this unique companion volume which combines arresting, colorful art, rare archival material, and a unique approach to aeronautical history.
The postersmost of them never before publishedfeature barnstormers, gliders, and flying boats; the earliest passenger flights, the first luxury-liners, mail carriers, jets, and much more. Spanning a century and a half, they combine the popular art and the commerce of their eras, with both explored in the entertaining, informative text by a longstanding National Air and Space Museum curator. From 19th-century circus impresarios offering rides in gaudy hot-air balloons to the sleek 21st-century airliners, they offer a fascinating illustrated history of flight as it evolved from an exotic realm inhabited only by visionaries and daredevils into our modern world of speedy jets and frequent flyersno longer extraordinary, perhaps, but still echoing with the exhilarating thrill and glamorous excitement captured here.
Countless visitors to the museumÕs traveling poster exhibition and the permanent exhibition “America by Air” will delight in the gorgeous and wonderful graphics collected in this appealing, affordable bookand so will aviation buffs, armchair travelers, and poster connoisseurs everywhere.