Moby Grape - 1967

BG-56 poster with Pacific Northwest Totem Pole Theme. Fillmore Moby Grape poster with The Charlatans and The Chambers Brothers 1967

Wes Wilson (1937-2020)


Moby Grape - 1967


First printing lithograph, Condition Very Good +


Framed: 26" tall x 19" wide





Close-up of frame at angle

Close-up of frame


This poster was printed using a “split fountain” technique. The colors are pink, pink to orange, orange to blue, and blue, on a field of black. The psychedelic posters were given to the printer in black and white with instructions as to what colors to lay where. The artist was typically present for the pressing and adjustments to the colors were made on the fly. Very much then, the printers were an important part of the artistic process.



Hippies tended to be fascinated by things related to Native Americans, so it is no surprise that the psychedelic artists often employed Native American imagery. This mask or totem pole face was likely modeled on the Northwest Indians – the only ones in the country who created totem poles—and was readily adaptable to psychedelic interpretation, as Wes Wilson did here.



Moby Grape was formed in late 1966 in San Francisco and is known for being perhaps the best band to completely fail to succeed commercially (there were others, like scene originators The Charlatans whose first album didn’t come out until 1969).  As described by Jeff Tamarkin, "The Grape's saga is one of squandered potential, absurdly misguided decisions, bad luck, blunders and excruciating heartbreak, all set to the tune of some of the greatest rock and roll ever to emerge from San Francisco. Moby Grape could have had it all, but they ended up with nothing, and less." They were in the middle of recording their highly-regarded first album during these dates.

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