The poster sale: From South Carolina to Omaha


Jared Barton

A student is browsing a collection of posters.
Students browse the collection of posters in the Milo Bail Student Center Plaza. Photo by Avery Cook/the Gateway

Last week, University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) students may have noticed a series of signs on campus featuring a friendly alien and quips related to The Poster Sale. Following the signs led students to the plaza outside Milo Bail Student Center where tables abounded with, unsurprisingly, posters.

“We start right after the freshmen come in,” said Key Bowen, one of the proprietors of The Poster Sale’s pop-up shop. “We’re based out of South Carolina—we have a store, but we go to colleges with our posters.”

The business, based out of Greenville, South Carolina, and founded by entrepreneur Mandi van Aswegen, focuses on sending satellite groups out to universities across the country, holding an annual poster sale at each location. This took some time to fine-tune, according to an interview in the Greenville Business Magazine, but seems to be worth it.

The posters range from band promotions, infographics and pop culture references, to vintage movie posters and independent art. From the observed diversity of the audience, they seem to cater to everyone. As far as costs go, all posters are $13 or less, according to the extraterrestrial mascot on their signs.

“Honestly, that’s not too bad,” said UNO senior Dani Apperson. “Some places will charge like 20 dollars or more for them.”

Aside from their lower-than-retail costs, their impact on the art community is significant. The company employs a program that allows developing artists to get their art to the masses in ways they realistically could not afford otherwise. This model allows for national distribution, and profit for all parties involved.

As of July 2019, the Greenville Business Magazine said the company’s program has provided this opportunity to 12 artists and intends to work with more. This, combined with the portability, exclusivity and niche market the company works in, makes for a unique and hopefully successful venture.

Bowen and her associate, Prince Uwaezuoke, were outside the Milo Bail Student Center last week with The Poster Sale from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily until it drew to a close on Friday, Sept. 27.