The Velvet Underground Poster
Bill Graham's early concerts were "events" and BG008 is an excellent example of the unusual fare. Top billing was Andy Warhol and his Plastic Inevitable, with the Velvet Underground and Nico "Pop Girl of '66." The show was an amazing, kinetic rock event with vocals, keyboard and dance projected on the wall in strobe light fractured frames. The Mothers rounded out the evening.
The pre-concert 1st printing has union logo 72 in the lower left corner and measures 14" x 20".
The 2nd printing is a 1967 post-concert reprint with no union logo and "Printing by West Coast Lithograph Co. SF" below "Geary" in the image. It measures 13 3/4" x 19 15/16".
The 3rd printing (see BG008-3) was printed in 1993 with "Andy Warhol and His Plastic Inevitable" in hot pink rather than white. "(c) Wes Wilson BG 8-3/PS 33" was added below "Fillmore" at the lower left corner of the image above "Ticket." The poster measures 14" x 20".
The 4th printing is on uncoated matte stock and has "W 2021" in the lower right hand margin. It was printed in 2021 by Wolfgang's in a 100 copy run. This reprint measures 13" x 19".
When the Avalon Ballroom and Bill Graham's Fillmore Auditorium began to hold weekly dance concerts, Wilson was called upon to design the posters. He created psychedelic posters from February 1966 to May 1967, when disputes over money severed his connection with Graham. Wilson pioneered the psychedelic rock poster. Intended for a particular audience, "one that was tuned in to the psychedelic experience," his art, and especially the exaggerated freehand lettering, emerged from Wilson's own involvement with that experience and the psychedelic art of light shows.