Problem (cigarettes)
Problem (cigarettes)

Artist: Willi Willrab German (1897-1973)

Title: Problem (cigarettes)

Plate: DWG.13

Description: Condition A

Lithograph Plate from "Die Deutsche Werbe Graphik
Printed by Francken & Lang, Berlin 1927.

Presented in 16 x 20 in. acid free, archival museum mat, with framing labels. Ready to frame. Shipped boxed flat. 
Certificate of Authenticity.

Image Size: 11 3/4 in x 8 in / 29.8 cm x 20.3 cm

Sheet Size: 10 in x 14 in / 25.5 cm x 35.6 cm

Price: $225.00

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“Lest you think this is an early antismoking campaign, Problem was actually a quite popular brand of German cigarettes. Willrab cleverly transforms the 'o' into a mouth smoking a cigarette, and the overall graphic quality feels much more Pop Art than Art Deco.” (Rennert)

Mahala Problem, officially Problem oHG, was a cigarette company from Berlin, popular and successful before and after the First World War. The company was founded on March 25, 1889, by Szlama Rochmann in Berlin, and later bought in 1932 by Reemtsma.


At the turn of the 20th century, Szlama hired commercial artists such as Louis Oppenheim, Ernst Deutsch-Dryden, Lindenstaedt, Lucian Bernhard to create advertisements. The German commercial artist Hans Rudi Erdt created the famous Fez wearing Moslem as the brand image for the Problem-Cigarettes.
Poster for Moslem cigarettes in 1908 by Hans Rudi Erdt.

A study of German commercial graphics.
This bound edition printed in 1927 is an important study of a great era of German graphic design : posters, packaging, advertising, book illustration, programs for theater, sports, etc. Profusely illustrated, mostly with tipped-in color plates of work by Bernhard, Hohlwein, Klinger, Preetorius, Gipkens, Kleukens, Cissarz, Pechstein and many others.