The grotesque nature of BG144 played in sharp contrast to the more orderly offerings of other poster artists and may have been a critical comment from the artist. Recalling renaissance paintings of faces fashioned from vegetables and animals, and foreshadowing modern montages composed of odd photographed bits and pieces that form a face, the only bit of wry humor in BG144 came from the smiling skull.
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The 1st printing poster was printed before the concert on plain matte uncoated stock. It lacks the "W" at the end of the ticket outlets strip found on the reprint, and it measures 14 1/16" x 20 3/8".
The second printing is on glossy stock and displays a purple "W" etched after "Music" at the end of the ticket outlets strip. It was printed after the concert and measures 14" x 21 1/4".
Lee Conklin's early influences were pen and ink masters Heinrich Kley and Saul Steinberg.After seeing articles featuring Wes Wilson's poster art, Conklin was inspired to visit San Francisco and show his art to Bill Graham. Conklin was soon commissioned to do posters and produced 31 original designs for the Fillmore between 1968 and 1969. Conklin rendered both graphics and calligraphy in intricate detail. What began as a personal challenge to disguise images within images and lettering soon turned into a concerted effort to turn every single letter and figure into another form, stretching the imagination to new limits.