July 19, 2010 (Farnborough, UK) – For more than 30 years, a collection of stunning, colorful posters that chronicle aviation history have hung in the offices of Cambridge Information Group (CIG), the majority parent company of flight operations software and services leader Navtech, Inc. Now, Navtech is introducing the collection to aviation enthusiasts everywhere by way of a virtual exhibition on Navtech’s corporate website, www.navtech.aero.
The collection was begun forty years ago by Robert N. Snyder -- entrepreneur, amateur aviator, and CIG Chairman -- as homage to his lifelong passion for travel. While the ever growing physical poster collection is spread around the world, decorating the CIG offices, its virtual presence – digital images of the works – is housed on the Navtech website. Accessible to all, website visitors can tour the virtual galley at anytime.
Farnborough Air Show visitors may be especially interested in the variety of posters that chronicle the very first air shows. For example, by clicking on the Great Paris Fortnight, an advertisement for a 1909 French air show, they’ll see the ad in detail and get a description of the clumsy – but ultimately successful – two-week event:
“The ‘Great Paris Fortnight’ was the first opportunity Parisians had to see not only one airplane in flight, but several machines in the air at once. Many of the experienced pilots did not attend the meet until the middle of the first week, and most of the contestants were novices. The first pilot raced his plane along the ground in front of the stands and stopped, never getting into the air. The second man met the same fate. Finally, a pilot in a Voisin biplane made a short, sputtering flight which overjoyed the crowd that had been waiting all day. This got the meeting going, and shortly, Count Charles de Lambert raced out on his Wright biplane. Two others followed and the crowd cheered the three planes wildly.”
“Bob and I feel as though we’ve found the perfect home for this collection on the Navtech site,” said Navtech CEO Mike Hulley. “The common denominator among the visitors to our site is a passion and deep respect for the innovation that puts a heavier-than-air machine into the air. This collection reminds us of our roots… this is an industry that has always faced challenges. But our history shows that our tradition of ingenuity can conquer all barriers.”
The entire collection encompasses five galleries organized by time periods, beginning with the late 1800s and ending in the 1940s. The first “gallery opening” takes viewers on an historic tour of the very beginnings of flight– ballooning – through the development of the “aeroplane” to the onset of the commercial aviation industry at the close of World War I. Gallery I’s nearly 80 works dating from 1893 to 1918 include advertisements (such as the Great Paris Fortnight), movie posters, and magazine covers, providing a diverse and unique introduction to the early years of aviation.
“The Navtech Aviation Poster Collection — the bulk of which documents aviation activity before World War I (1914) — is especially interesting to me because its imagery gives us a glimpse of how this new-fangled, high-tech thing was introduced to consumers. Also, it gives us indirect insight into how the turn-of-the-20th century public wrestled with understanding the significance and repercussions of aviation,” said Joanne Gernstein London, PhD, a former curator of the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum’s aviation poster collection, who has worked closely with the Navtech Collection.
Understanding the historical importance of each work is made simple through a description that accompanies it. As viewers enter the gallery, they can view works in time-delineated groups then, click on any piece of art to see it in detail and read the description, which captures its significance. Visitors are encouraged to comment on the posters through an email link back to Navtech at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Navtech welcomes not only members of the aviation industry they serve, but anyone with a passion for flight and travel to visit its corporate website www.navtech.aero and tour the Navtech Poster Collection. Navtech will open new galleries for viewing twice a year, with the 1920s gallery opening planned for fourth quarter 2010.
About Navtech, Inc.
Navtech, Inc. is a leading global provider of flight operations solutions, serving more than 350 airline and aviation services customers. Navtech’s product suite includes aeronautical charts, navigation data solutions, flight planning, aircraft performance software (take-off/landing, weight and balance), and crew planning solutions. Many of Navtech’s products can be configured as part of an EFB solution, including take-off data calculation, weight and balance, and aeronautical charts. These products directly support millions of flights each year and help Navtech customers maximize efficiency, reduce costs, ensure compliance with complex national and international safety regulations, and effectively deliver their services.
Headquartered just outside Toronto in Waterloo, Ontario -- Canada’s technology center -- Navtech also has locations in Stockholm, London, and Ahmedabad, India, and is further supported by satellite offices around the world. Its home on the web www.navtech.aero is the first and only site for viewing the Navtech Aviation Poster Collection, a collection of hundreds of posters and other ephemera that capture the history of aviation through the arresting graphic design of the day.