Dreams Unreal: The Genesis of the Psychedelic Rock Poster
On view through April 12, 2020
Albuquerque Museum
Albuquerque, New Mexico

In the late 1960s, San Francisco was ground zero for an unprecedented social revolution. Artists created a new genre in the process: the collectible rock concert poster.

“Dreams Unreal: The Genesis of the Psychedelic Rock Poster” explores the development of counter culture in San Francisco from 1965–1970 through the posters, hand bills and postcards that were printed to advertise music performances and events. The intersection of music and the arts became central to the youth culture that fostered social and cultural experimentation.

A group of young visual artists, including Lee Conklin, Rick Griffin, Alton Kelley, Bonnie Maclean, Victor Moscoso, and Wes Wilson, collaborated with commercial lithographers to create these printed materials for almost daily events at venues like the Fillmore and the Avalon featuring musicians and bands like the Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane, Santana, Janis Joplin led Big Brother and the Holding Company, and others.

The posters are part of a collection given to the Albuquerque Museum by Dr. James Gunn who acquired the posters while attending the University of California Berkeley in the 1960s.

Image credits:
Bob Schnepf, BG84: Lothar & The Hand People, The Doors, Captain Beefheart & His Magic Band; Sept. 29, 30, Denver, 1967, offset lithograph on paper, 20 × 14 in. (50.8 × 35.6 cm), Albuquerque Museum, gift of Dr. James Gunn.