Purpose and Function


A Massey-Harris calendar designed by Arthur Hider.

    Posters often provide a variety of details about individuals and a specific time period. As they can reflect an individual’s views, interests, and ultimately act as a form of advertising for numerous icons, places, companies, etc. Posters are ephemeral as they may encapsulate a certain era and its overall importance to an individual or a society (Haug, 2016, p. 68). In this case, the poster may have been a part of a calendar advertising the Massey-Harris company. Calendars are a part of everyday use as they serve as an indicator of the current date, therefore the poster would ultimately perform its initial purpose to be seen by individuals, as it would serve as a form of branding. 

    This specific Massey-Harris poster is used to advertise the agricultural company and the adoption of a variety of rural machinery. From the poster, it is suggestive that both men and women were able to use agricultural tools, as both genders placed importance on the rural lifestyle. As well, the poster depicts both, well-dressed, civilized men and women, indicating that individuals with prestige and class are consumers and operators of agricultural equipment produced by the Massey-Harris company. Within the different pictures on the poster, the names of the machines are listed, similarly to that of a catalogue, the company must have used this as a way to attract consumers to specific machinery, in order for them to acquire. As well, the poster includes the measurements of the different machinery, enticing consumers to take interest in the different technology through the given dimensions.