Bill Graham said that the "Appeal Party", the first benefit for the San Francisco Mime Troupe, was by far the most significant evening of his life in theater. Thrown to raise money for the Troupe after Ronnie Davis was arrested for performing in the park without a permit, the Benefit brought together a mixed group of musicians, theatre buffs, political liberals, and passionate folks looking for something hip and happening.
Thousands of people flocked to the corner of Haight and Ashbury during the Summer of Love, but few saw the unfolding phenomenon as clearly as Gene Anthony did. From his apartment one block up the hill, he witnessed the extraordinary pilgrimage of young people from across the country as they trooped to San Francisco in search of answers, approval and love, and he captured the compelling vignettes through his telling lens. Anthony's photographic talent, subjects and well-deserved acclaim extend far beyond the psychedelic period, but his ability to capture a mood on a face or the essence of an era from a simple street sign was recognized and refined during that time. His photographs have, in turn, become the myriad faces of the Summer of Love.