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Wes Wilson (1937–2020), leading 1960s rock concert poster artist

Getty Images / Corbis / Photo by © Ted Streshinsky

Designed classic concert posters for the Grateful Dead and Jefferson Airplane

Wes Wilson was a pioneering rock concert poster artist who created posters for leading 1960s San Francisco psychedelic rock bands including the Grateful Dead and the Jefferson Airplane. He created a recognizable concert poster style with a psychedelic font that made it appear as if the letters were moving. Based in San Francisco during the flower power movement, he designed posters for Bill Graham’s famous Fillmore and for many local bands such as the Quicksilver Messenger Service. Wilson designed the poster for the Beatles' final concert held at Candlestick Park on August 29, 1966.

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Died: Friday, January 24, 2020 (Who else died on January 24?)

Details of death: Died at the age of 82.


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Wilson on the San Francisco hippie scene of the 1960s: “It was a time of enlightenment. In the '60s, we used to think of Utopia as something that was really going to happen." —2006 interview with the Springfield News-Leader

What they said about him: “Very sorry to hear about the passing of Wes Wilson. He was a legendary contributor to the psychedelic art scene. Was fortunate enough to meet him several times at @TRPSorg events & lucky to have several of his posters in my collection. RIP” —Shane Tobin of Sofar Sounds

Full obituary: Springfield News-Leader

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