Posters spread throughout Europe during the 1890s thanks to the development of colour lithography, a multi-colour printing technique. A gifted draughtsman with a natural ability for design, Mucha was well placed to explore this new artistic medium. After the overnight success of his first poster, Gismonda (1894) Mucha established his fame as a ‘Master of Poster Art’ (Maître de l’Affiche). The majority of his iconic posters were produced with the Parisian printer, F. Champenois, with whom he signed an exclusive contract in 1896. Mucha produced over 100 designs for advertisements, decorative panels and calendars under this contract.