Lili Réthi, 1894-1969

Post Office Underground Mail Train: London'

Post Office Underground Mail Train: London. PRD 208, 1937, POST 110/4147

Austrian born artist and illustrator Lili Réthi left Germany to avoid a commission from the Nazi Government’s Hermann Göring. She eventually settled in the United States. In the late 1930s, she produced artwork for GPO posters illustrating postal transport including the Post Office London Railway (later Mail Rail).

More by Lili Réthi

Lili Réthi is only known to have designed three public posters during her stay in the UK. Two were for the Post Office, and the third was for the London, Midland and Scottish Railway.

Motor transport repair depot. Poster artwork 1937, POST 109/199

This is her other GPO poster. It’s a striking depiction of a motor vehicle repair shop, with the red Royal Mail motor fleet in the background. As with her Mail Rail poster, the dominant themes are strength, effort, and impressive architecture.

Posters by other artists on the same theme

Lili Réthi wasn’t the only poster artist to take Mail Rail as a subject.

Artwork for a poster of the Post Office Railway by Edward Bawden
Post Office Lines of Communication
'Post Office Lines of Communication'. Poster artwork by John Rowland Barker (Kraber), 1947, POST 109/206.
Post Office Switch Cabin
'Post Office Switch Cabin'. Poster artwork by Richard Ziegler, c.1939, POST 109/330.
Post Office Underground Railway
'Post Office Underground Railway'. Poster artwork by Richard Ziegler, c.1939, POST 109/328