Zeev Raban was an important participant in Bezalel, the Jerusalem art academy started at the beginning of the 20th c. by Boris Schatz . In addition to being an artist, illustrator and teacher, he also headed various of the school’s workshops and created the designs for many of the important craft pieces produced there. One of his more important roles was that of commercial designer.
This small (4 x 2 3/4 in.) watercolor and pencil sketch on wove paper appears to be a study for a poster advertising wines of the Grands Caves Rishon. A woman’s hand holds a card on which Raban has briefly indicated the bottle labels of 5 new wine brands. Behind the large card stand various wine bottles and a wine goblet, perhaps set up for a tasting. Raban’s poster designs were very influential in the newly evolving area of advertising in British Mandate Palestine. The English lettering of the poster suggests this time period after WWI. We do not know whether this poster was ever published. The sketch is signed Z. Raban (in Hebrew) below the woman’s hand. It is in very good condition, with only a small piece of tape on the lower left rear and an apparent small loss just below the tail of the R in Rishon. (sketches)