Thursday, November 1, 2012

A Taste of Americana: Hatch Show Print!

Recently, I was fortunate to visit Nashville, TN for a business conference. (More info on the conference to mind is STILL spinning with all the great info I sucked up there!). But, luckily while in The Music City, I got to visit the iconic and historic Hatch Show Print, one of the oldest working letterpress print shops in America!

As you walk into Hatch Show Print's storefront on Nashville's Broadway Street (though be forewarned, they will be moving locations very soon!), it's like you can hear angels singing! OK, I'm being over dramatic, but seriously, you are greeted with walls lined with old letterpress forms, and walls completely covered in colorful posters, for as far as the eye can see! It was a designer's happy place!

Opening in 1879 (yes, that old!) by the Hatch family, the print shop flourished during the days when show business was get-up-and-go business. Whether circus, minstrel show, vaudeville act, or carnival, show posters created the excitement that sold the show, covering the sides of buildings and barns in cities and towns throughout the country. Later on Hatch became well known for their music posters, featuring not only famous country artists, from Hank Williams to Johnny Cash to Garth Brooks, but also musicians of all genres.  

Hatch Show Print has captured American history, southern culture, and entertainment without losing that irresistible appeal of turn-of-the-century design aesthetics. For all you music lovers, Americana buffs, graphic arts collectors, graphic designers, and commercial advertisers of all persuasions out there, if you ever find yourself in the Nashville area, be sure to stop by Hatch Show Print, you won't regret it!

Now, I'll just need to figure out where to hang my two new Hatch Prints!

Special thanks to Jonathan Boehman of Immersion Active for introducing a few of his fellow designers to Hatch Show Print!

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