The Liner Notes

All the music that matters

DAM offers a Psychedelic Experience

with 2 comments

“To fathom hell or soar angelic just take a pinch of psychedelic.”

                                     – Humphry Osmond, British psychiatrist and early LSD researcher



Rick Griffin

The 1960s and 70s featured some of the best music in history. Bands like Jefferson Airplane, The Rolling Stones, Jimi Hendrix Experience, The Yardbirds and Grateful Dead were common headliners.

It only stands to reason that the album art for such bands is as innovative and creative as the musical acts that they were promoting.

Through July 19 the Denver Art Museum is hosting the Psychedelic Experience, a fantastic gallery of more than 300 rock posters from the San Francisco Bay area spanning from 1965-71.

Artists included in the historic gallery, which bleeds vibrant colors, trippy shapes, twisted images and mind-bending music, are:  Wes Wilson, Bonnie MacLean, Victor Moscoso, Stanley “Mouse” Miller, Lee Conklin, David Singer and my personal favorite Rick Griffin.

The extraordinary works of art, heavily influenced by hallucinogenic drugs, provide a window into a subculture that was more influential than it was ever aware.

In addition to the art, the exhibit does a good job of describing the artists and their relationship with the music. The context of the entire San Francisco scene, from Ken Kesey’s Acid Tests to the history of each artist, is contained within the museum walls.

Majority of the posters were for shows at the famed Fillmore Auditorium or Avalon Ballroom, and the images depict the shift from underground fringe audiences to more mainstream appeal as the images and text shifted towards the early 70s.

In addition to the main exhibit there is a side room filled with vinyl records, magazines and backlight posters from the era. There is also a chance for visitors to make their own collage style poster. The museum also has a limited number of authentic artist autographed posters on hand.

Tickets for non-members are $15. For more information visit






Kelly & Mouse








Written by David Young

May 18, 2009 at 6:42 pm

Posted in Music

Tagged with , ,

2 Responses

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  1. Wow! I’m impressed with all that you took in and the way you summarized such a vast collection.

    Carol Young

    May 19, 2009 at 6:37 am

  2. I sure wish I could make it out to see this show! In case you’re interested, Wes has a website at Lots of cool art to be found, some new stuff and the classic posters. Thanks for the post!


    May 19, 2009 at 1:44 pm

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