Psychedelic Art Exchange

Hapsash Posters and Osiris Vision Posters - Part 3

A guide to British concert posters and British psychedelic posters by Nick Etheridge

Hapsash posters and Osiris Visions posters - a word of caution about reprints.

The OA and Hapshash posters have been widely copied and unless you are well acquainted with the originals and the many fakes on the marketplace, get some good advice before parting with any money. To paraphrase Brad Rogers, a pioneer in identifying the OA bootlegs –”if you don’t know where it’s been for 50 years or you’re not an expert assume it’s a fake.”

Most fakes seen on the market come from the same original source in the UK and printed up in 80’s or 90’s along with various permutations of story about originating from a newly discovered ‘stash’ usually in an attic of a relative of the printers. 

These still appear regularly on eBay and smaller auction houses. The reproductions have recently been ‘rebranded’ and often labelled as ‘later ‘or 2nd printings from the 1970’s so being offering at a more affordable lower price, but they are in fact nice decorative items only. So, seek either provenance, expert advice or a respected dealer.

None of the bootlegs are true screen prints and look and feel new and generally 20 x 30 in. There is no standard ‘one size fits all’ and all for authentic OA issues and sizes vary slightly across the series and print runs. 

Nearly all surviving Original Hapshash or OA posters are damaged or used in some way. They almost never survive in faultless mint condition. A poster with aging and damp/water stains on the reverse, pin holes, tape residue and handling are commonplace. This can all be positive factors establishing age and originality as most of these posters have ‘lived a life’. So, don’t let that put you off.

Be very wary of white clean new looking paper with no imperfections in near perfect condition. Be cautious of bargain prices as rare originals seldom come at knock down prices. I have also seen fakes that are deliberately distressed and damaged to appear old, so be looking out for this trick too.

The list of these current well-known Hapsash and Osiris Visions Bootleg posters are as follows-

Pre OA-PinkFloyd/Soft machine at UFO Poster by Michael English (double size 40 x30 inches)

OA 102 Tomorrow My White Bicycle Poster - BOTH white and cream paper versions 

OA109 The Move at the Marquee Poster

OA 114 CIA v UFO Pink Floyd Poster-there is also an early 1970’s POST OA non-screen print reproduction that comes up for sale often as an original 1st print.

OA 118 5th Dimension Leicester Poster

OA 123 The Who I can see for Miles  Poster

OA 124 Richard Bernstein Gallery Poster

OA 134 Julie Felix At the Albert Hall Poster

The following posters were originally offset litho- All theOAS and OA 500 series were also offset

OAS 4 The Who at the Saville Theatre Poster

OA501 Arthur Brown Track Promo Poster

OA 502 Jimi Hendrix Track Promo Poster

 

Yarrowstalk licenced Osiris Visions reprint posters

There is also a group of licenced Osiris Visions reproduction posters known as the Yarrowstalk edition printed by Brian Zahn of the US Yarrowstalk counterculture magazine.  These posters were screen printed in the later part of 1967 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and are the earliest known licensed reprints. 

The posters can be distinguished by the lack of OA printing Credit and some copies appear slightly misprinted. Unfortunately, there is no printers mark, but some helpfully do have an elaborate Yarrowstalk stamp and/or Brian Zahn’s signature on the verso. However, it is impossible to determine 100% exactly when they were printed, reprinted or in what numbers. 

Mint condition copies still emerge for sale on the market and from the Zahn estate who seem to still have copies for sale. The known Yarrowstalk prints are -

OA 103 Hendrix at the Fillmore Poster

OA104 UFO Coming Poster

OA 114 CIA v UFO Poster

OA 116 Save Earth Now Poster

Although not OA originals or produced in London they are historically relevant as the earliest reprints licenced from Hapshash so they have value, and are not recent bootlegs. They can make an affordable substitute for the more expensive and harder to find original Osiris Visions posters 

11 (2).jpg
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Verso of Hendrix at the Fillmore OA 103 Yarrowstalk edition

                                                                                        

Recent Discoveries 

One of the great joys of collecting is also that of occasional rediscovery and recently several unknown original Hapshash works have come to light. They have no OA number and not works printed for Osiris Visions, but they have been acknowledged as original pieces by Nigel Waymouth. Hopefully there is still more to be discovered!

Hapsash and the Coloured Coat at the Paradiso April, 25, 1968

Hapsash and the Coloured Coat at the Paradiso April, 25, 1968

Hapshash and the Coloured Coat at the Paradiso 25 April 1968 / Thursday? Good!

This poster reuses the 1966 pre Hapshash English /Waymouth poster Friday? Good!  With a reimagined and irreverent 1960’s Last supper with colourful new characters and uses it as a gig poster for the bands appearance at the famous Paradiso Club in Amsterdam. 

 Hapshash expanded it interest into creating experimental music recording two albums and naturally creating the artwork and promotional material. As a studio work it seems to succeed with a cast of quality musicians supporting the artists who didn’t play on the albums but as a live act it became shambolic and acrimonious. 

The few gigs were apparently improvised, chaotic and only a few more occurred back in the UK. This Holland trip was the only time both English and Waymouth performed together live and Waymouth describes these gigs as the end of their artistic partnership. This is the only known copy which came to light in 2017.

Score it at the Head Shop

Score it at the Headshop poster

Score it at the Headshop poster

These small promo posters in green on pink paper were given away to customers at the Kensington Park Road Head Shop London. The stoned hippie head surrounded by hashish (?) smoke and shooting stars is typical Hapshash. There are currently two known copies of this recently discovered poster. The wavy ‘Score it at the Headshop’text is similar in style to the text on the Hapshash 14hr Technicolor Dream flyer design of April 67 so possibly from the same early Hapshash period. 

This guide was written by Nick Etheridge. Nick welcomes any comments or additional information you may have. can be reached at nicketheridge1@hotmail.com

 

 

 

References and Notes Hapsash and Osiris Visions posters

Whocollection.com. A very useful Osiris poster resource by respected collector Brad Rogers with information and images about the series and his pioneering research on the fake OA posters. http://www.whocollection.com/hapshash_&_osiris_posters.htm.

V&A Museum London – A great resource of many original and rare OA posters in the permanent collection including the International Times file copies and Michael English’s own collection that and can be viewed online. https://collections.vam.ac.uk/.

Information about the infamous UK Hapshash and poster faker Nigel Mentzel- https://mentzelposters.blogspot.com/;This is a comprehensive blog by Australian academic and passionate Martin Sharp and 60’s art blogger Michael Organ.

Bibliography - Hapsash and Osiris Visions posters

Useful texts and background for the UK underground scene.

High Art by Ted Owen

Days in The Life, Voices from the English Underground 1961-71 by Jonathon Green

In the 60’s by Barry Miles 

My White Bicycle: Making Music in the 1960’s by Joe Boyd

3D Eye by Michael English

The Art of British Rock 50 years of Rock Posters, Flyers and Handbills by Mike Evans

I want To Take You Higher- The Psychedelic Scene 1965-69 

Underground Graphics by Graham Keen

 

Hapsash and Osiris Visions Concert Posters from the UK Underground - part 1

A guide to British concert posters & British psychedelic posters by Nick Etheridge

A lot has been said and continues to be said about classic US psychedelic posters. There has been commentary, cataloguing, revision and revelation as material emerges from deep collections and prices and excitement continues to rise.

By contrast, UK psychedelic posters, are mostly uncatalogued and with limited classification making it a potential Wild West for fakery, fraud and uncertainty for the uninitiated.

However, some of the posters that emerged from the London scene are among the most creative, beautiful and desirable anywhere and highly coveted by astute collectors. Today there is enormous demand from collectors and museums worldwide for the few extant copies who recognise the historical importance, stunning artwork and legendry performers and artists who thrived and exploded out of the vibrant London scene of the late 60’s. 

Hapshash and the Coloured Coat Posters

The greatest and most cohesive body of psychedelic art from the UK are the almost mythical posters created by Hapshash & The Coloured Coat. The artists Michael English and Nigel Waymouth were initially put together to create artwork for the famous London psychedelic nightclub the UFO on Tottenham Court Road, London and from that wellspring emerged a small but astonishing series of concert posters, record promos, head and fashion shop posters and numerous smaller graphics works like the fold out cover posters for OZ magazine. They eventually recorded an LP culminating in a few live gigs that pre-empted their parting of ways mid-1968. Their legacy of perhaps 30 posters of fantastic quality, ground-breaking printing and rich imagination defines the UK psychedelic era and set new standards for what and how posters could be printed.

It is worth noting that due to scarcity, desirability and limited information all authentic Hapshash posters printed in 1967-68 are considered as 1st pressing originals. Although some popular posters were reprinted during this time such is the desirability and scarcity of the 1960’s originals that these hand produced works are considered equally collectable, a situation quite unique in the rock poster collecting world.

OA 114 CIA Pink Floyd at UFO Club concert poster

OA 114 CIA Pink Floyd at UFO Club concert poster

OA 114 CIA v UFO Pink Floyd at UFO Poster

OA114 is one of the most beloved of all Hapshash UFO and Pink Floyd posters. This was for what turned out to be the last night of the original UFO club before pressure from the mainstream press persuaded the police to act and close it down. The poster is a tour de force of cosmic symbols, flying saucers and beautiful printing. This is one of the most bootlegged of all the OA posters and Nigel Waymouth’s personal favourite.

 

Position 70 OZ 4 poster

Position 70 OZ 4 poster

Position 70 OZ 4 poster.In May 67 Hapshash produced the first of two beautiful wraparound covers that unfolded into posters for issue 4 and later 13 of the ground-breaking OZ magazine. The iconic image was reproduced minus the magazine price by Big O as a commercial poster and was still available into the early 70’s. Despite its popularity few have survived. The image shows the unfolded poster.

 

 Osiris Visions Ltd. and the poster printing process 

 

The majority of the Hapshash output are part of a wider catalogue of posters printed and distributed by Osiris Visions Ltd. This business was set up by Joe Boyd who ran the UFO club and Barry Miles the proprietor of Indica Books and the International Times the leading UK counterculture newspaper. 

Once Osiris Visions was established all posters were allocated an ‘OA’ or Osiris Agency catalogue number which was printed onto the posters as part of the printing credit and copyright details which can be seen on all the original OA Hapshash posters apart from a few non-OA productions and early pre-OA printings.

This OA printing credit can be key to deciphering and understanding when, and sometimes where, the poster was printed. The printing credit below is from the last original printing of OA 103 Hendrix at the Fillmore. The Charlotte St. address identifies it as the last of the official printing of this poster dating it between Dec 67 or the early 1968 and the type font indicates it was printed by TSR.

The OA printing credit contains valuable information and is the key to determining when and where the poster was printed

The OA printing credit contains valuable information and is the key to determining when and where the poster was printed

Artists who worked on the OA series were the very best of the scene including Mike McInnerney, Martin Sharp, Adrian George and Greg Irons from the US as well as various images supplied by photographers like Des Dale.

The OA series allocations can appear haphazard with numbers missed, posters reallocated to different numbers as well as numerous and seemingly pointless additional series with only a few posters in it. But at least it is an inventory of sorts even if initially confusing and incomplete.

A key feature of Hapshash posters is they were beautifully hand screen printed with liberal use of bright dayglo and rich metallic inks giving them a distinctive texture, colour intensity and depth. They revived, improvised and improved split colour ‘rainbow printing’ mixing different colours seamlessly to dramatic affect. Despite the process being labour intensive it might be used multiple times on a single poster. OA 123 I Can See for Milespromo Track Records for The Who has three passes of ink and all are split and graduate seamlessly to different colours!

Unfortunately, these printing methods are time consuming and very costly so only small numbers could be produced (100’s not 1000’s) and the fact the best posters were silkscreen meant Osiris Visions made little if any money from them.

The printing process also prohibited any large-scale production as the individual colour screens used to pass the ink through would quickly wear out from the abrasion of forcing ink over and through them by hand with a squeegee. Additional runs would need new sets of screens crafted from templates prepared by the artists and increasing the run size did not reduce costs.

OA 103 Hendrix at the Fillmore Auditorium concert poster

OA 103 Hendrix at the Fillmore Auditorium concert poster

The handmade screens would never be identical one printing to the next or from one print shop to another. The incredibly popular Hendrix at the Fillmore OA103 was printed no less than five times at three different locations each with distinct layering of overlapping inks. A small point perhaps but the district differences are very useful now to help determine authenticity and chronology of printings. Despite the multiple printings it is still rare as an original due to the modest numbers printed.  

About half the concert posters were fly posted often in dazzling large groups and the others sold on but Osiris Visions ran at a loss due to the high production costs required to produce them. Joe Boyd finally closed Osiris Visions mid 1968 as the poster business declined and the Hapshash partnership dissolved.

 

UFO Mk 2 OA202 poster

UFO MK2 OA202 poster, often referred to as “The Toothpaste Poster”

UFO MK2 OA202 poster, often referred to as “The Toothpaste Poster”

This was the first stunning work from the Hapshash collaboration in March 67 and is considered a Pop Art masterpiece. It’s an impressive 30 x 40 inches and expensive to produce so probably printed in very low numbers. It is a flowing pink/orange peppermint swirl spelling UFO floating over a gold background. They were posted around the streets of drab London in large groups and must have looked mesmerizing.  This advertised six weeks of shows at the UFO Club that included Pink Floyd, Soft machine and Arthur Brown. It is sometimes referred to as the’ toothpaste poster’ and as an original incredibly rare.

The artwork from Hapshash is distinctive for their use of styles and images from Pop Art to Art Nouveau (both original and plagiarized), mystical symbols and mythical animals, ground-breaking and playful use of split colour printing. Within many of the highly detailed and layered artworks will be found small whimsical details, cartoon characters, unnoticed cryptic messages and astrological signs that all add to the mystique of the posters. 

The desire for a cohesive vision in the poster was paramount to the artists and perhaps at times more so than what was being advertised. Information was often minimized to the periphery or integrated directly into the graphics raising them to more ‘objet d’art’ rather than a throwaway promotional device. 

 

OA 130 Mystical Pantomines Incredible String Band Concert Poster for March Tour 1968

OA 130 Mystical Pantomines Incredible String Band Concert Poster for March Tour 1968

OA 130 poster Mystical Pantomimes Incredible String Band March Tour 1968.

Full of sexual and colourful symbolism. Fantastic multiple split colour passes of ink from gold to yellow and red and a dark to light blue over the top. The tour name only appears in an obscure thought bubble and tour dates modestly displayed (or obscured) in the bottom border over rows of red dots. The band’s name appears in the clouds alongside other small characters over a sea of geometric dots that cover the lower portion of the poster. This poster also has the circular Hapshash logo used on design work in 1968.

 

 

 

Screen or Offset ? OAS Poster Series

Most Hapshash posters are screen printed but this is not always the case. Joe Boyd of Osiris Visions requested that Hapshash use the cheaper offset litho process to reduce costs but they prefered the silkscreen process due to the fantastic results. However a few are litho printed, including the OAS series. 

The OAS  series begins with the four beautiful Sunday at the Saville OAS 1-4 for concerts in September and October 67 which are offset but commonly described or sold as silkscreened. They do have the look of a silkscreened poster but they are all offset on uncoated stock that also gives them a matt silkscreened look.OAS 4 has been bootlegged so caution is required as many copies circulating are reprints. 

Despite being limited to offset printing for this series Hapshash still had fun experimenting and there are two rarer variants, OAS 3 Traffic that uses pink and blue rather than black and an OAS 4 The Who that is a darker orange/brown rather than bright orange.

Its not well known that there are six, not four, posters in the OAS series that includeOAS 5 Osiris Visions Promo ( see below) and OAS 6 The Who Sells Out by Adrian George that came machine folded into the first 1000 issues (500 mono 500 stereo) of the Album released 15  December 1967. The album with small  ‘psychedelic poster inside’ sticker and original folded poster today now command a high price.

 

OAS 3 Sunday at the Saville  The Pink Floyd/ Jimi Hendrix Poster

OAS 3 Sunday at the Saville The Pink Floyd/Jimi Hendrix concert poster

OAS 3 Sunday at the Saville The Pink Floyd/Jimi Hendrix concert poster

Comonly thought of as a screenprint this litho poster in matt almost grey silver lists a stunning selection of key performers of the UK underground in October 67. Joe Boyd who ran Osiris Visions also managed many of the bands here and also produced Pink Floyds first single. Although performing on separate nights very few concert posters are able to boast both Jimi Hendrix and The Pink Floyd with Syd Barrett on the billing.

This poster and other OA’s were oficially reproduced by the San Fransisco Arts lab in the 1990’s under the supervision of the English and Waymouth with early numbers being hand signed by the artists. This series of reprints uses very bright and shiny metalic inks giving a spectacular but different feel than the originals.

About the Author - Nick Etheridge is a dedicated collector based in the UK and passionate about psychedelic posters from Hapshash to Hawkwind.

In recent years he has become fascinated by the influential groundbreaking posters from Osiris Visions and Hapshash issued for a short period in the heyday of the 60’s scene in London.

Nick is dedicated in his research clarifying the posters, identifying print runs and increasing our knowledge along with helping avoid the fakes that have flooded the market.

Nick welcomes any additional information you wish to contribute on this subject, and is available to answer any questions you may have. He can be reached at Nicketheridge1@hotmail.com


Stay tuned for part 2 which will be published soon!

 

 

References and Notes Hapsash and Osiris Visions posters

Whocollection.com. A very useful Osiris poster resource by respected collector Brad Rogers with information and images about the series and excellent research on the fake OA posters.

V&A Museum London – vam.ac.uk; there are many original and rare OA posters in their permanent collection and can be viewed online.

Hapsash and Osiris Visions Poster Bibliography 

Useful texts and background for Hapsash and Osiris Visions posters and the UK underground scene.

High Art by Ted Owen

Days in The Life, Voices from the English Underground 1961-71 by Robert Green

In the 60’s by Barry Miles 

My White Bicycle: Making Music in the 1960’s by Joe Boyd

3D Eye by Michael English

The Art of British Rock 50 years of Rock Posters, Flyers and Handbills by Mike Evans

Grande Ballroom Added to National Register of Historic Places!

Legendary concert hall produced historic moments and highly sought after concert posters

What collectors have long known is now officially recognized….the Grande Ballroom was one of the most important concert venues of the 1960’s! The legendary music venue was recently added to the National Register of Historic Places.

A recent photo of the legendary 1960’s concert hall, The Grande Ballroom

A recent photo of the legendary 1960’s concert hall, The Grande Ballroom

The Grande, located in Detroit Michigan, represented one of the largest and most vibrant outpost of the Psychedelic Scene outside San Francisco. Musical icons such as Pink Floyd, The Who, Led Zeppelin, Cream, Traffic and many others appeared on the Grande stage.

These shows were promoted through the creation of mind boggling concert posters that created by well known artists Carl Lundgren and Gary Grimshaw. Their output is universally recognized for being of World Class quality, in the same league as the poster created by “The Big Five” out west.

What’s most exciting to collectors is that these posters were created in extremely limited quantities of 500-1000 per issue. Equally important, Detroit did not have the huge legion of poster collectors that were active in California.

This means that the survival rate of Grande concert posters, particularly in high grade, is extremely low. That’s why we described Grande Ballroom concert posters as a “powder keg ready to explode”, in our 2018 year in review blog post.

If you are looking for beautifully designed concert posters that are historically important and extremely rare, artworks from the Grande Ballroom are hard to beat!

To read more about Grandes historic designation, click here.

The Art of John Van Hamersveld Museum Exhibit Opens July 20th!

“The Era of Cool” featured at Westmoreland Museum of American Art in Pennsylvania.

John Van Hamersveld art exhibit opens at Westmoreland Museum of American Art 7/20/19.

John Van Hamersveld art exhibit opens at Westmoreland Museum of American Art 7/20/19.

Over the course of his 50 year career, legendary pop artist John Van Hamersveld has created influential and instantly recognizable works of art including the iconic Endless Summer poster and historic concert posters of Jimi Hendrix, Cream, Dylan, and many others.

We’re excited to learn that The Westmoreland Museum of American Art in Greensburg, Pa. has announced they will become the next in a steady stream of art museums that are now recognizing the historical importance and artistic appeal of 1960’s graphic art and design.

There is no doubt that the exposure of our beloved artworks to Mainstream America completes the transformation of our niche hobby into an important and desirable category of art that is recognized by museums around the world.

The Westmoreland is located just 35 miles east of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The exhibit is scheduled to run July 20th through October 20th.

To learn more about the Hamersveld exhibit, click here.

Dead & Company Limited Edition Screenprint by Owen Murphy Sells Out Fast!

Artist’s personal copies available exclusively at PAE

This Dead & Company Limited Edition screen  print by Owen Murphy sold out in 5 hours!

This Dead & Company Limited Edition screen

print by Owen Murphy sold out in 5 hours!

A Dead & Company concert poster by South Jersey born, artist Owen Murphy is proving to be a hot collectible. The poster, created for a June 20th, 2019 concert by Dead & Company at BB&T Bank Pavilion, in Camden, N.J., was released in a limited, numbered edition of 700. Collectors snapped up the 580 posters that were made available at the concert in under 5 hours. 50 copies were saved by the band. The Artist’s personal 70 copies are being offered exclusively by PAE on 6/28/19 @ 6:00pm ET, SHARP.

"When Dead and Company commissioned me to create this artwork, it was literally a dream come true," says Murphy." I grew up in South Jersey, listening to the Grateful Dead, and I've attended dozens of concerts at this venue over the past 20 years. My great grandfather even worked at Campbell's soup after World War 1 which is headquartered in Camden. It was critical for me to include as many local references in this poster as I possibly could."

The poster's clever artwork, considered by many collectors to be Murphy's best, features Uncle Sam displaying posters for the show that are designed liked Andy Warhol's famous Campbell Soup cans. Philadelphia's iconic skyline is in the background with a silhouette of a Grateful Dead dancing bear taking the place of William Penn.

Murphy, now based in Baltimore, Maryland, began his career on April 1, 2011, when he created a poster for the popular jam band, Pigeons Playing Ping Pong. In the past eight years Murphy has created concert posters for world famous bands such as Widespread Panic, Phil Lesh and Friends, Govt' Mule, Disco Biscuits, Slightly Stupid, and many others that are now highly sought after by collectors.

To learn more about Owen Murphy and his groundbreaking concert posters, check out his his Instagram page @onedropdesignstudio or visit his Facebook page, One Drop Design Studio.

The Artist’s 70 personal copies will be available for purchase on 6/28/19 at 6:00pm Et , SHARP at Psychedelic Art Exchange’s website, www.ConcertPosterGallery.com.

CBS Broadcast Major Segment on "Play It Loud" Exhibition at the Met!

Instruments and concert posters of the 1960’s take center stage .

Dozens of vintage concert posters are now on display The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New City.

Dozens of vintage concert posters are now on display The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New City.

Last month we reported on the new “Play It Loud” exhibit at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City. We explained the monumental significance of this event and the eventual reverberations that will be felt throughout the Vintage Concert poster Market.

The exhibit is now open and mainstream media can’t get enough of this exhibit. Seems like The Beatles, Stones, Hendrix and the rest of our 1960’s musical icons hold a lot more mass market interest and appeal than Rembrandt and Picasso!

CBS put together a wonderful story that was broadcast nationwide and is available around the world. We are all readers of this blog to checkout the story here.

It's Official!! Metropolitan Museum of Art's Groundbreaking Rock and Roll Exhibit opens April 9th !

“Play It Loud” will feature 130 instruments and Vintage Concert Posters!

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The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City has announced the opening of their “Play It Loud” exhibition on April 9th. The exhibit is being heralded as the first major museum exhibition of Rock and Roll instruments.

In addition to the instruments, a large number of Vintage Concert Posters will be featured!

The fact the most important and influential art museum in the world is featuring a rock and roll exhibition further cements the immense historical importance and appeal of authentic artifacts of this era.

This marks a moment in time where our hobby is truly taking center stage. This blog has reported extensively on recent museum exhibitions of Bill Graham, The Rolling Stones and the 50th Anniversary of The Summer of Love.

In each case, these exhibits have exposed several hundred thousand people to the importance of this era and has led to a surge of interest in Vintage Concert Posters.

The bottom line is that what was once a niche hobby has now been transformed into a legitimate category of art that is being exhibited in the most important museums around the world!

It’s never been more exciting to be a collector than RIGHT NOW! We will give a full report on the exhibition in coming weeks.

To read all the details more about Play It Loud, click here.

NPR Examines Grateful Dead's Immense Popularity With Today's Youth!

Iconic band is surprisingly more relevant than ever before!

This Museum Quality FD-26 Skull and Roses concert poster realized a record $50,600 in our auction last year.

This Museum Quality FD-26 Skull and Roses concert poster realized a record $50,600 in our auction last year.

The future desirability of Vintage 1960’s Concert Posters was further reinforced with today’s story on NPR’s 1A podcast. The show examined the immense popularity of the Grateful Dead and 1960’s music with the generation that was born after Jerry Garcia’s death in 1995.

The show highlights 3 guests, Grateful Dead archivist David Lemieux, musician Holly Bowling and the directors of programming at Sirius FM.

To summarize, the huge interest in The Dead is based on a sense of community, the enduring values of The Sixties, and the american musical tradition of The Dead that is a mashup of virtually every musical genre.

All 3 of these factors are fueled by unprecedented access and exposure to the band and the era through live shows and music that is readily available online through the internet archive, Youtube, dozens of music festivals, and the various post Dead incarnations of the musicians.

It’s quite an interesting show and the focus is squarely on the popularity of the band and the era with today’s young people. For those that question whether people in the future will care about this music, and the collectible artifacts linked to it, the answer is a resounding “Yes!”.

To listen to the podcast, click here.

Boom! Rick Griffin Limited Edition Collaboration Announced with Dr. Martens!

Vintage ‘60’s art has firmly established worldwide, mass market appeal.

The desirability and collectibility of vintage 1960’s counter culture art was further verified by the recent announcement that Dr. Martens has entered into a Limited Edition collaboration with The Estate of Rick Griffin.

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The Limited Edition collection includes two different pairs of world famous Doc Martens boots, two different T-shirts and a backpack, all featuring iconic Rick Griffin art.

The fact that an international corporation that has a large, highly sophisticated marketing department has chosen to feature Rick Griffin art on products targeted to younger generations further affirms the lasting desirability and appeal of this iconic imagery.

This announcement comes on the heals of a recently announced Grateful Dead beer and a Wall Street Journal article that examines the mania attached to authentic items with direct links to the sixties. Both of these are covered in earlier posts to this blog.

To learn more about the Rick Griffin/ Dr. Martens collaboration, click here

2018 Vintage Concert Poster Market Year in Review!

The future is uncertain. Hindsight is 20/20. Here’s our report card on our 2018 Predictions.

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By all accounts, 2018 was a remarkable year for the Vintage Concert Poster Market. Let’s take a look back at our exact predictions from 12 months ago and see how many panned out — our report card and current comments are in italics.!

1) Record Prices fo the Finest and Rarest!

Increased demand and dwindling supply will lead to record prices across ALL categories. 

Grade: A+

There is no question that 2018 marked a tipping point where demand greatly increased supply. This led to record prices across all price categories from $100 posters up to $50,000.

2) The Number of Market Participants Multiplies...Again!

This is a market that clearly has the wind at it's back. (See 2017 year in review blog post for reasons why) At PAE, our goal is to bring at least 1000 new clients onboard.

Grade: A-

A variety of factors that have been reported here led to a major influx of collectors, many from that are experienced in other collectibles categories. For this prediction, we deserve an A. However, PAE came a little short of generating 1000 new buyers, lowering our grade to A-.

3) A Focus on Tangible Assets Will Fan The Flames.

The White House is committed to spending money like a drunken sailor. This is already leading to a fall in the dollar and a rise in gold. What does this have to do with vintage concert posters? Plenty. This is the very beginning of a cycle of renewed inflation and desire for "hard assets". 

Grade: D

Trump did spend like a drunken sailor, and interest rates rose to reflect a red hot economy. However, these monetary moves have not yet filtered into financial markets. Gold, which is a fair barometer for mainstream America’s taste for tangible assets moved sideways the entire year. It looks like the move in gold we predicted in 2018 is may now be underway as the price has increased 10% in the past 90 days.

4) Continued Growth at PAE

2017 was year of growth for PAE, growth in clients, growth in volume and growth in staff. In addition to our two principals, Glen and Scott, we now have 2 full time employees and 3 part time employees that each log about 20 hours each. 

Grade: A

2018 represented records for us in terms of dollar volume, number of posters and number of customers. our team has grown to 3 full time and 4 part time members to assure that PAE remains the safe and secure place to buy, sell, and learn about Vintage Concert Posters.

5) Severe Supply Shock Hits Market.

There's a sound in the marketplace that started 2017 off as a murmur but has slowly grown into a roar. We're talking about a giant sucking sound of rapidly dwindling supply that has become pervasive in the marketplace.

Grade B+

Overall, there is a dramatic drop in the number of desirable posters that are 100% Original with no restoration. It’s commonplace to see major offerings where over half the top listings have restoration of some form or other. That being said, PAE had a record year of sellers and consigners that wanted to tap into our worldwide clientele that believe current prices remain ridiculously dirt cheap and are willing to pay whatever it takes to secure the best quality posters in existence. We were proud to offer collectors an incredible selection of high quality items in every price category.

6) Premiums for Artist Signed Material Explodes.

This is a trend we have seen steadily gaining steam over the past several years and we see an acceleration of this trend in 2018.  

Grade: A

Big deal. Anyone could have predicted this trend. A total “No Brainer” trend that will continue to gather steam. Stay tuned for a future blog on this subject.

7) Interest in Grande Ballroom, Vulcan Gas and Armadillo World HQ Posters Climbs. 

As more and more collectors enter the marketplace, interest will gravitate to areas that are currently under valued. Over the past 2-3 years we have seen an explosion in interest for all three of the venues listed above. 

Grade: B

We nailed it when it comes to Armadillo World Headquarters posters. Demand for these went into thermo nuclear overdrive, as hot as any category out there. Grande posters have ALWAYS been popular and in demand. We saw an uptick, but no more of an uptick than the general market. Grande posters are a powder keg ready to EXPLODE, but what we envision didn’t fully happen in 2018. These are VASTLY under valued at today’s price levels, in our opinion. Vulcan Gas posters represent a fertile area for anyone that wants history, rarity and mind-blowing art for pennies on the dollar to what they may trade at one day. Stupid cheap compared to their San Francisco brethren.

8) and 9 ) Values of Large Size Fillmore and AOR Posters Explodes

Up until now, CGC has not had the capabilities to grade the large size Fillmore and AOR posters, but this situation is about to change. Look for these massive posters to command substantial premiums once CGC commences grading in the coming weeks!

Grade: C-

We jumped the gun on this one. We thought CGC would start grading these posters much earlier in the year, and that collector demand and commensurate prices would jump forward. CGC didn’t get started on this until the second half of the year, and little supply has entered the marketplace so far. The large format posters that have appeared have been VERY well received, watch for fireworks in this category in 2019.

10) Renewed Focus on Handbills and Postcards

It's no secret that a concert handbill is far easier to counterfeit than a concert poster. Third party authentication and grading by CGC has brought much needed integrity to this overlooked area of the market. With the introduction of CGC, we have seen an explosion of interest in concert handbills, now that collectors can acquire them with confidence. 

Grade A+

Another no brainer trend that is in it’s VERY early days. This segment of the market had been left for dead due to a multitude of authentication issues. Independent authentication and grading by CGC has solved all this with a beautiful package. Collectors can get the same iconic art, the same legendary bands, and in some cases rarity that EXCEEDS the poster for a fraction of the money the posters command. A Grand Slam that leaves collectors with an insatiable appetite for these historic artworks.

Or next blog, to be published shorty, will disclose our predictions for 2019.

Grateful Dead Inspired Beer Hits the Shelves Nationwide!

Counter-Culture values continue to carry mass appeal.

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Dog Head Brewery has just announced the release of their Grateful Dead inspired American Beauty Ale which will be available nationwide. The beer is being brewed as a collaboration with the Grateful Dead and features the band’s iconic “Dancing Bears” on both the label and carton packaging.

Earlier this week, during live lot viewing at our Gallery, the conversation AGAIN turned towards the future desirability of vintage concert posters and whether “anyone would care” once the original Deadheads (and other members of 1960’s counter culture) leave to attend the great Festival beyond.

Regular readers of this blog understand that values and music that came to life in the 1960’s are not just alive and well, but quite possibly far stronger and more widely embraced than ever before.

We have reported on the growing popularity of 1960’s influenced fashion, Nike’s release of Psychedelic Sneakers, Rolling Stone’s special Grateful Dead issue, Amazon’s purchase and promotion of the 6 hour Long Strange Trip documentary, the exploding popularity of music festivals across our the world, retrospectives at the world toniest museums and countless others. And let’s not forget something many people thought would never happen in their lifetime, the legalization of marijuana!

One thing is certain, NONE of these projects would be entering and offered to mainstream society if there was not mass appeal and interest.

We see this trend continuing to gather steam. The exploding interest in the 1960’s and the introduction of unbiased third part grading by CGC has led to an exponential growth in the number of people now collecting vintage 1960’s concert posters, which are arguably the most attractive compelling authentic artifacts from the era! It’s a great time to be a collector!

To read the entire article on the American Beauty Ale, click here.

Rolling Stone Magazine Publishes Major Feature on Vintage Concert Posters!

Major media outlets continue to highlight the historical importance of these rare artworks

Rolling Stone magazine is the latest in a long list of major media outlets to publish a story on the historical importance of vintage 1960’s concert posters. The story takes up 8 full pages in a special Grateful Dead Collectors Edition on newsstands now. All of the major artists of the era are mentioned.

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The articles states, “Skulls and roses, melting fonts, and so much more: The iconic images created by San Francisco artists for The Dead’s gig posters were essential to the band’s legend.”

This statement is one of the linchpins that make this collectible so compelling. These beautiful posters were produced in ridiculously small quantities and provide a direct link to what many consider to be the most important decade of the 20th century.

With the advent of super strict, unbiased third party authentication and grading, collectors are just beginning to discover how difficult most issues are to locate in original, undamaged condition, free from all restoration.

We will continue to keep you abreast of developments as this emerging collectible continues to earn attention from major art museums and media outlets in the coming months. Next year’s 50th anniversary celebration of Woodstock is sure to add major fuel to this red hot fire!

Certified Neil Armstrong Collection Realizes $5.2 Million at Auction!

Record prices directly attributed to unbiased third party authentication and grading.

The collectibles world is talking about the recent auctioning of astronaut Neil Armstrong’s collection November 1-3, 2018. Nearly 1000 lots realized $5,276,320, far exceeding the most optimistic expectations.

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Each item in the auction was independently authenticated by CAG, a division of CCG, the same folks that certify the vintage concert posters and handbills we offer.

The auctioneer for the collection stated, “ CAG unlocked tremendous value for the Armstrong Family Collection by giving bidders greater confidence in the authenticity and provenance of the artifacts. At the same time, CAG delivered significant long term value and protection to buyers through its guarantee, impartial assessments and protective holders. CAG’s certification made it far easier for us to auction the collection and likewise for our clients to evaluate and bid on it.”

This is yet another in an endless list of examples of how important independent, third party authentication and grading is to the collectibles marketplace. Third party authentication provides confidence, and an unbiased opinion on condition is critical when small differences in quality means huge differences in value.

When it comes to vintage concert posters and handbills, CGC grading is particularly instrumental in bringing scores of new collectors (buyers) into the marketplace. Collectors no longer have to worry about figuring out for themselves whether an item is a) authentic, b) a first printing or reprint, or c) possesses hidden restoration that can be difficult to see.

For sellers, CGC is an absolute must if one wishes to receive the record prices and added liquidity that CGC graded posters and handbills are now commanding.

We believe these are still the very earliest days of this emerging trend and look for premiums of each grade level to increase as collectors begin to fully understand how strict CGC grading is and how little supply exist at the top end of the market.

New York Times Publishes Major Article on British Acid House Flyers!

Direct link drawn to 1960’s Psychedelia

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The New York Times recently published an extensive feature article on the art and collectibility of British Acid House flyers. This is exciting news on many fronts:

1) The article draws a direct link between this art and the concert posters and flyers of the 1960’s.

2) The Times reports that these flyers are highly sought after by collectors today.

3) These flyers are also getting recognition and display at major museums in Europe.

4) Interest in authentic counter culture artifacts is worldwide and continues to grow.

Any recognition and reporting of collecting counter culture artifacts must be deemed a major victory for our hobby. Major museum exhibits around the world continue to flourish which leads to more media exposure and then more exhibits.

This virtuous cycle seems to be accelerating in speed and is certain to continue in a major way with next year’s celebration of the 50th Anniversary of Woodstock. As previously reported here, we already know that a major museum exhibit of 1960’s concert posters will open in the United States in one of the most important art museums in the world.

To read the entire New York Times article, and to view some great photos, click here.

CGC to Attend TRPS Concert Poster Show 10/20/18 in San Francisco!

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Two representatives will be on hand to accept submissions and answer questions.

We have just received news that representatives of CGC will be attending the upcoming TRPS Concert Poster show to be held October 20, 2018 in San Francisco.

It’s no secret that vintage concert posters graded by CGC are setting records with breathtaking frequency so interest in this segment of the marketplace is at an all time high.

All collectors are invited to submit posters at the show for grading and authentication. Representatives will also be available to answer any questions you may have.

We hope to see you there!

CGC San Francisco Set Breakers Auction Live Lot Viewing 10/20/18 at TRPS Concert Poster Show!

Here’s your chance to personally inspect and bid on 150 vintage concerts posters with CGC Grading!

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The CGC Rock poster Revolution is rolling into San Francisco! We’re pleased to announce that all lots in our October CGC Graded Concert Poster Auction will be available for live lot viewing at the TRPS Annual Concert Poster Show on October 20, 2018! 
 
This auction presented allows you to discover for yourself why Psychedelic Art Exchange is “The Collector’s Friend” – the safest place to buy, sell, and learn about vintage concert posters.
 
You Can Bid With Confidence Knowing ALL 150 Lots Have Been Independently 

Authenticated and Graded by CGC!
 
ALL Lots are Being Sold UNRESERVED.
 
All Lots Have a Starting Bid of just $1.00. That’s right, ONE DOLLAR!

All Lots are available for inspection at our Gallery in Baltimore, Md. Or in San Francisco 10/20/18.
 
All Lots are guaranteed in writing with the strongest guarantee available anywhere.

*A 15% buyers fee and postage & insurance will be added to all winning bids*
 
Highlights include:

 A Museum Quality Grateful Dead Acid Test Poster- The finest quality we have EVER handled and the FIRST CGC graded example to appear at auction!

 Ridiculously rare SET BREAKERS for the Fillmore Auditorium (BG-74), Family Dog (FD-29 OP-2) and Vulcan Gas Company. This is the VERY FIRST TIME EVER that these three legendary posters have been offered at auction at the same time!
 

An unimprovable BG-1, OP-2, CGC Graded 9.8, the very FIRST poster in the Bill Graham series!

 A spectacular example of Rick Griffin’s BG-105 Hendrix Flying Eyeball!

 The FIRST CGC graded example of the famous Grateful Dead/ Buffalo Springfield Amazing Electric Wonders poster to appear at auction.

 3 different Museum Quality Grande Ballroom posters being offered at auction with CGC grading for the very FIRST time!

 Many affordable Museum Quality Original First Printings that will sell for $100-$500! These pieces of history represent an extraordinary value compared to other collectibles.
 Remember all lots have starting bids of just $1.00!
 
All collectors are invited to inspect all lots in person at our Gallery, in Baltimore, MD. or in San Francisco 10/20/18.
 
Live lot viewing allows you the opportunity to see how incredibly strict CGC grading standards are. You’ll also immediately understand that the CGC holder is the ultimate way to safely and securely protect your posters for the long term. If you can’t make it to our Gallery, contact us with any questions you may have.
 
We are really proud of this auction. There is truly something for every taste and budget. We hope you enjoy participating in this sale as much as we did assembling it.
 
Good Luck in the Auction!

Opportunity Alert! 50th Anniversary of Woodstock!

It’s been widely reported in this blog that Vintage Concert Posters have been receiving continuous and widespread recognition and exposure at major museum exhibits around the world over the past few years. The best (by far) is yet to come!

Authentic Woodstock posters are highly coveted and enjoy demand from people OUTSIDE our hobby, as well as within. The poster above is extremely rare and was created for display on the side of a bus. Many experts expect values to increase dramatically starting next year.

Authentic Woodstock posters are highly coveted and enjoy demand from people OUTSIDE our hobby, as well as within. The poster above is extremely rare and was created for display on the side of a bus. Many experts expect values to increase dramatically starting next year.

This exposure has added a major source of legitimacy to these amazing artworks and has resulted in a huge increase in the number of people that are now collecting these posters.

All of this will be DWARFED by the international exposure that is now, suddenly, just months away. Beginning on January 1st, the world will be celebrating the 50th Anniversary of Woodstock -- the most famous music festival in history. 

In addition to major 50th Anniversary Concerts both in the United States and abroad, there is sure to be major worldwide television, newspaper and magazine coverage of this historical milestone. More importantly, literally millions of people will be exposed to vintage concert posters in major museum exhibits that will occur around the nation. Additionally, PBS and CNN have already announced major multi part 50th Anniversary documentaries next year. 

In short, expect for the whole world to have a case of “Sixties Mania”, that is sure to influence the sights, sounds and fashions of 2019. 

We have tirelessly reported on the lollapalooza effects that have taken the market for Vintage Concert posters by storm, 1)Incredible beauty, 2)Extreme Rarity, 3)Ridiculously Cheap Prices, and very critically, 4) Unsurpassed Historical Importance, and 5) The introduction of independent, third party grading by CGC.

How many collectibles can you name that enjoy an entire year of celebration and publicity? All of this is not theoretical, or destined to happen at some indefinite point in the future. It’s all happening NOW and will continue to accelerate the rate of change we are currently seeing in this fast moving and exciting marketplace!

Exclusive news for readers of this blog! We can definitively state that next year will feature the most important museum exhibition of vintage 1960's concert posters ever offered to the public. This exhibit,  will be in one of the most important, if not THE most important art museum in the world!

You've seen this movie before! They say that history doesn't repeat itself, but it rhymes. 

It was just 2 years ago that we informed our readers that the market for vintage concert posters was going to receive a major shot in the arm from the world's celebration of the 50th Anniversary of The Summer of Love. We explained that collectors should add to their collections while prices were still at rock bottom lows.

Everything we said in Fall of 2016 has come true, 100%!

The media kicked in, the concerts were held, television special were produced, and major art museums had lines out the door with people wanting to experience their own little throwback to "The Sixties". This resulted in a huge shot in the arm for the hobby and it's been onward and upward ever since.

All of us have seen firsthand what happens when our little part of the world lands on the front page of headlines. Values have moved up substantially for posters after the passing of  B.B. King, Chuck Berry, Tom Petty and now Aretha Franklin. 

Why? 

Because this was news that transcended our hobby and entered mainstream America!

The same exact thing is about to happen with the 50th Anniversary of Woodstock!

As a reader of this blog, we implore you to use the information you have NOW, while YOU ARE STILL WAY AHEAD OF THE CURVE. Use the coming weeks and months to start or add to your collection while supply is still available and prices are still affordable. And, if you ever dreamed of owning an authentic Woodstock poster, and you're lucky enough to track one down, grab it NOW, before the masses arrive to compete with you. You’ll be glad you did!

Grateful Dead FD-26 Skeleton and Roses Concert Poster auctioned for World Record Price of $50,600!

Record smashed as interest in vintage 1960's concert posters explodes

This Grateful Dead Skeleton and Roses FD-26 concert poster was auctioned for a world record price of $50,600

This Grateful Dead Skeleton and Roses FD-26 concert poster was auctioned for a world record price of $50,600

A rare 1966 Grateful Dead Skeleton and Roses concert poster realized a world record price of $50,600 in an auction held August 9, 2018 by Psychedelic Art Exchange. The poster was independently authenticated and graded by Certified Guaranty Company (CGC) as 9.4 on a scale of 10, and generated interest from collectors around the world.

"This is just the latest in a series of record prices we have seen recently in our auctions," stated Glen Trosch, President of Psychedelic Art Exchange. " Collectors are excited about bidding on these concert posters now that third party authentication and grading is available from CGC."

The auction featured 225 vintage concert posters and handbills that had been independently certified by CGC, the world's leader in third party authentication of collectibles. The auction had a 100% sell through, a very rare occurrence for any collectibles auction.

Other highlights of the auction include:

Tribute to Dr. Strange 1965 Handbill CGC Graded 8.0, sold for $6,325.
Jimi Hendrix CNE Auditorium 1968 Concert Poster CGC graded 9.6 sold for $4,887.
Van Morrison Avalon Ballroom 1967 Concert poster CGC Graded 9.9 realized $546.00

"Needless to say, these record prices made our consignors very happy," added Trosch. "Our phone is ringing off the hook from long time concert poster collectors that are looking to take advantage of these new price levels. After waiting over 50 years, many believe now is the perfect time to sell. "

Psychedelic Art Exchange is now accepting consignments for its next auction scheduled for October, 2018. They have also recently published a free report, Insider Secrets of the Vintage Concert Poster Market - 2018. For more information, visit ConcertPosterGallery.com