DescriptionRICK GRIFFIN (American, 1944-1991)
Grateful Dead 25th Anniversary, GD/25 Lettering + Red Robed Skeleton/ Grim Reaper with Guitar
Gouache on layered celluloid
22 x 16 in.
Signed lower right
In 1990, the Grateful Dead celebrated twenty five years of playing together as a band and released the Built to Last record to celebrate this event. At this time Rick was called upon to create art to help promote the band and the live concerts they were planning to play. In this instance he took the letter "G" and designed it in a way that it could form the left side of a circle, and the letter "D" to form the right side of the circle. This was an ingenious idea. Then he floated the number "2" over the "G" and the number "5" over the "D." This is another unconventional, bold move, but it works amazingly well. Then in the gap left between the numbers and letters he inserts the triumphant, red robed skeleton thrusting the guitar out of the circular boundaries of the art, while holding the grim reaper blade with his other hand. The painting offers a unique version of this classic Grateful Dead image, well set in its wide silver wood frame.
Although it was done at the same time as the other Without A Net poster designs and album cover, this piece stands out as uniquely different from these other works. Rick Griffin may very well be the most celebrated psychedelic artist to have been associated with the San Francisco psychedelic poster scene of the 1960s. The Grateful Dead may very well be the most celebrated psychedelic rock band to have been associated with the San Francisco psychedelic hippie movement. This lot provides the opportunity to purchase a major piece of rock and roll history which is directly linked to both of these culturally important figures.
Acquired from the Rick Griffin Estate.
From the Collection of Peter Golding.
Unless otherwise noted, this lot is in good condition with only normal wear commensurate with age. Framed to an overall size of 31 x 25.5 in. Not examined outside of frame.
*Heritage Auctions strives to provide as much information as possible but encourages in-person inspection by bidders. Statements regarding the condition of objects are only for general guidance and should not be relied upon as complete statements of fact, and do not constitute a representation, warranty or assumption of liability by Heritage. Please note that we do not de-frame lots estimated at $1,000 or less and may not be able to provide additional details for lots valued under $500. All lots are sold "AS IS" under the Terms & Conditions of Auction.
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