The cinema poster is an essential hook. On the Tube, on the side of a bus or in the street, a poster can swing your decision whether to buy a ticket or give it a miss.

But one art gallery believes that these days they are a generally dull mash of shots from the film with the necessary information.

Dark City Gallery thinks that film posters should capture your imagination and your emotions, not just your brain – make you stop in your tracks and be moved in some way. In essence, they should be art.

To that end, the people at Dark City are holding an exhibition of film posters by some of the finest designers and artists working today at Phoenix Cinema in East Finchley.

“About ten years ago, film posters were very uninspiring to me,“ says Ross Beaty, who runs the Buckinghamshire-based gallery. “They were put together with lots of photographs and had little creative appeal.

“However, in 2010, 20th Century Fox released Darren Aronofsky’s Black Swan, with a stunning set of four posters created by London designers La Boca. These wonderful Art Deco-style posters were displayed in cinemas and worked perfectly as bold, theatrical advertising.

“In recent years, I’ve noticed more interesting cinema posters materialising and following suit, especially for smaller independent films. In general, though, great cinema posters are still very rare.“ This exhibition aims to put that right. Head on down to the cinema and enjoy some stunning screen-printed alternatives by the likes of La Boca, Swava Harasymowicz, Adam Simpson, Brett Ryder, Dan Mumford, Rich Kelly, Rodolfo Reyes, Iker Ayestaran, Landland and Edward Tuckwell.

  • Dark City Gallery will be exhibiting at Phoenix Cinema, High Road, East Finchley throughout September. Details: 020 8444 6789,