Globe Collection and Press at MICA

Globe posters were truly the people’s posters. For more than 80 years, they brightened city street corners and telephone poles, country crossroads and union halls, shouting the names of bands and the dates of carnivals up and down the East Coast. A Globe Poster made you look, with its bright inks and bold type that shook and shimmied.

Founded in 1929, Globe grew by leaps, bounds and bold swatches of DayGlo color into one of the nation’s largest showcard printing companies. Starting with vaudeville, movies, burlesque and carnival, Globe found its groove in the 1960s with posters for top R&B and soul acts like James Brown, Otis Redding, and Ike and Tina Turner.

In 1975, Joseph Cicero Sr., a longtime employee of the company, purchased Globe Poster from owner Norman Shapiro. Cicero’s sons, Bob, Frank and Joe Jr., followed their father into the business, carrying Globe’s iconic style forward into the rap, hip-hop and Go-Go scenes.

With demand for posters dwindling in this digital age, the Cicero brothers decided to close up shop in 2010. But Baltimoreans and students aware of Globe’s legacy formed a Friends of Globe group to find a new home for its treasures. Because of that vision, the desire of the Ciceros to keep Globe in Baltimore, and MICA’s creative thinking, Globe did not die. Truckloads of wood type,­ letterpress cuts and other tools of the trade moved from Highlandtown to MICA in the summer of 2011, and when the fall semester started, Bob Cicero began teaching a new generation of artists how to make a poster “pop.”

Now known as the Globe Collection and Press at MICA, the spirit of Globe is kept alive through education, archiving and creation of new work. The press engages students, faculty, and youth educational programs, as well making new work for non-profits and commercial enterprises. Clients include Sanrio’s Hello Kitty, Smithsonian Institutions, Baltimore’s Flag House Museum and MICA’s Voter Access Initiative.  

Globe interns working on a new Globe style poster design.



Protest Posters

Download and print your own Globe style posters for FREE. Support the Black Lives Matter movement and related protests.

Explore the Globe Collection

Learn about Globe history, browse the archive, see our recent projects and more!