Psychedelic Signatures: Rock & Roll Posters at the Tweed Museum of Art

June 21 – Jan. 15
Opening Reception on Tuesday, July 5, 4-6 p.m.

The Tweed Museum of Art is thrilled to present Psychedelic Signatures, an exhibition of classic rock music posters from the collection of Andrew and Victoria Olson. These amazing images were part of an explosion of creative energy, centered in San Francisco, where new music, light shows, and psychedelic art all came together for a few short years between 1966 and 1972.

Posters by Lee Conklin, Rick Griffin, Alton Kelley, Bonnie MacLean, Stanley “Mouse” Miller, Victor Moscoso and Wes Wilson are featured in this exhibition. Like so many of their generation, these artists migrated to the west coast, where critical masses gathered around musical performances. Rock poster designers used pulsating patterns, intense colors and images borrowed from pop culture to promote and mimic rock music.

As Grateful Dead drummer Mickey Hart put it: “The posters looked like what we were playing. They … didn’t just announce the concerts, they resonated with the styles of the times and described visually what the Grateful Dead, Big Brother, Quicksilver [Messenger Service] and the [Jefferson] Airplane were doing at the Fillmore and the Avalon [Ballroom] the following nights.” – Mickey Hart, Grateful Dead drummer, foreword to Stanley Mouse, Freehand: The Art of Stanley Mouse (Berkeley: SLG Books, 1993), p. 7.

Victoria and Andrew Olson are both educators – she teaches biology at The College of St. Scholastica, he, history at Holy Rosary School. The Olson’s collecting activity often brings them face-to-face with artists, designers, and musicians of the era. Andrew writes about the experiences in a regular column in the Reader Weekly. The Olson’s collection, Andrew’s writings and links to other information can also be viewed at:

Many artists participated in the creation of images we identify with the 1960s, but posters promoting concerts survive as primary visual touchstones of the era. Between 1966 and 1972, a dozen artists created over 350 posters. Books like The Art of the Fillmore and websites like document and organize them for fans, collectors, and the curious public.

This activity is made possible in part by a grant provided by Minnesota State Arts Board, through an appropriation by the Minnesota State Legislature and a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts.

Free and open to the public, the Tweed Museum of Art is located in Ordean Court on the campus of the University of Minnesota Duluth.

Museum hours are Tues. 9am-8pm, Wed.-Fri. 9am-4:30, Sat. and Sun. 1-5pm.

For more information about the Tweed Museum of Art and its programs, 218-726-8222 or visit

The Tweed Museum of Art is one of six units in the School of Fine Arts, UMD. The University of Minnesota is an equal opportunity educator and employer.

1 Comment


about 11 years ago

Andrew, I'd like to personally thank you for not displaying any paraphernalia associated with Jack White, I thought it helped to solidify the overall theme of classic rock.

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