Past Exhibition

Turned On!: The American Blacklight Poster, 1967-71

May 13 – July 16, 2017

Study Gallery

Organized by artist Gary Westford and drawn from his personal collection, Turned On!: The American Blacklight Poster, 1967-71 offers viewers an opportunity to experience the fun of stepping into a 60s style blacklight room featuring 10 posters and an Op art dress.

In the late 1960s, poster artists experimented by using printing inks that fluoresced under blacklight bulbs that emitted ultraviolet light. In darkened rooms lit with these special lights, the blacklight posters appeared to glow and magically radiate their own light. The blacklight poster industry took off in studios all over the country, but was primarily centered on the West Coast.

These popular posters were marketed across the United States and were often designed in celebration of the liberation and freedom that was, in part, associated with the utilization of psychedelic drugs and the search for new or “alternative” realities. To that end, the subject matter of these posters included colorfully idealized visions of wild and idyllic “psychedelic” landscapes; images of handsome young hippies; rock stars such as Jimi Hendrix, The Doors, and Janis Joplin; Hells Angels bikers; Jesus Christ; the peace and earth movements; Native American, African American, and Mexican American heroes; and artfully complex non-objective geometric prints that referenced Op Artists’ use of high-intensity color contrasts.

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The fashion industry also used fluorescent inks on clothing, as exemplified by the exhibition’s Op art Permapress synthetic dress made by Alice of California.

Westford says, “Within environments where blacklights were installed and where music was played, the movement of dancers who wore this clothing became dynamic and kinetic poetry in motion.”


Companion Exhibitions

This exhibition is part of 3 exhibitions that collectively celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Summer of Love.

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Catch more psychedelic fun with the major exhibition Behind the Beyond: Psychedelic Posters and Fashion, 1966-71, opening June 3 and continuing through August 26, 2017, in the Melvin Henderson-Rubio Gallery and the Maribeth Collins Lobby. 
More information

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The 60s: Pop and Op Art Prints from the Collection of Jordan D. Schnitzer and His Family Foundation exhibition explores the Pop and Op art movements and how they significantly influenced the development of psychedelic posters and fashion. This exhibition opens on May 13 in the Print Study Center and continues through October 22, 2017. 
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Behind the Beyond Related Events

In conjunction with the Behind the Beyond exhibition, a wide variety of lectures, films, gallery talks, as well as a children’s art camp have been planned.

Lecture
Behind the Beyond: Psychedelic Posters and Fashion in San Francisco, 1966-71
Presented by Gary Westford
Friday, June 2, 2017 at 5 p.m.
Paulus Lecture Hall, Willamette University College of Law
Free and open to the public

Gary Westford will provide a brief overview of the psychedelic music and poster movements in San Francisco, the artists who made them, and their artistic influences. It will include examples of poster work done for Bill Graham’s Fillmore Auditorium, and Chet Helm’s Family Dog, as well as other venues in the city. In addition, he will also explore the blacklight poster movement and touch on the stylistic diversity in fashion, from both hippie and Haute Couture perspectives.

Museum Members Opening Reception
Friday, June 2, 2017, 6 - 8 p.m.
Hallie Ford Museum of Art

Cost
Museum Members and Invited Guests: complimentary
Non-members: $5/person suggested donation at the door

New Members: are welcome to join at the event or online
RSVP Online 
Or by phone at 503-370-6855 or by email at museum-art@willamette.edu

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Lecture
From Seed to Flower: 
The Evolution of the Psychedelic Poster in
San Francisco Before the Summer of Love, 1965-67
Presented by Scott Montgomery
Associate Professor, Art History, University of Denver
Thursday, June 8, 2017 at 7:30 p.m.
Paulus Lecture Hall, Willamette University College of Law
Free and open to the public

Scott Montgomery will trace the origins and development of the psychedelic poster in San Francisco over its initial, formative period, from its embryonic manifestations in “The Seed,” the seminal poster for the Charlatan’s psychedelic residency at the Red Dog Saloon in Virginia City, Nevada, in June 1965, to the full blossoming of the psychedelic style by the onset of The Summer of Love in June 1967. Grounded in the so-called hippie movement, the psychedelic poster emerged as a visual litmus test for being “turned-on” or hip. During this long “Psychedelic Spring,” of June 1965 to June 1967, the psychedelic poster was a primary visual means through which the San Francisco counterculture spoke to itself, fashioning its most powerful artistic visual identity.

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Gallery Talk
Behind the Beyond: Psychedelic Posters and Fashion in San Francisco, 1966-71
Tuesday, June 13, 2017
Presented by Gary Westford
Tours will commence at 12:30 p.m. in the Maribeth Collins Lobby
Free and open to the public

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Film Showing
The 60s: The Years That Shaped a Generation

2005, color, 114 minutes
Thursday, June 22, 2017  |  7 p.m.
Roger Hull Lecture Hall at the Hallie Ford Museum of Art
Free and open to the public

The 1960s was a defining chapter in America's history. It was a time when a generation rebelled and lost its innocence. From the Vietnam War to the struggle for racial equality, and from the sexual revolution to the birth of the counterculture movement, the 1960s was a decade of change, experimentation, and hope that transformed a nation.  

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Kids Summer Art Camp
SUMMER ART BLAST 2017: Feeling Groovy, Making Art 
Hallie Ford Museum of Art 
June 26-30, 2017 
9 a.m. to noon 
Ages 8-12 
Class limit: 10 students 
Pre-registration required by June 9, 2017 
HFMA Members: $108; Non-members: $120 
All supplies provided.

More information

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Gallery Talk
Behind the Beyond: Psychedelic Posters and Fashion in San Francisco, 1966-71
Tuesday, July 11, 2017  | 12:30 p.m.
Presented by Gary Westford
Tours will commence in the Maribeth Collins Lobby
Free and open to the public
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Film Showing
Monterey Pop

1968, color, 78 minutes
Thursday, July 13, 2017 | 7 p.m.
Roger Hull Lecture Hall at the Hallie Ford Museum of Art
Free and open to the public

On a beautiful June weekend in 1967, at the height of the Summer of Love, the first and only Monterey International Pop Festival was presented, ushering in a new era of rock and roll. The pop festival would launch the careers of Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, and Otis Redding, as well as highlight the extraordinary talents of the Who, the Byrds, and the amazing Ravi Shankar. 

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Film Showing
American Experience: Summer of Love

2007, color, 60 minutes
Thursday, July 27, 2017 | 7 p.m.
Roger Hull Lecture Hall at the Hallie Ford Museum of Art
Free and open to the public

In the summer of 1967, thousands of young people flocked to San Francisco's Haight Ashbury district to join the hippie experience, only to discover that what they had come for was already disappearing. By 1968 the celebration of free love and music had descended into a maelstrom of drug abuse, broken dreams, and violence.

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Film Showing
Gimme Shelter

1970, color, 91 minutes
Rated R
Thursday, August 10, 2017 | 7 p.m.
Roger Hull Lecture Hall at the Hallie Ford Museum of Art
Free and open to the public

Called the greatest rock film ever made, this landmark documentary follows the Rolling Stones on their notorious 1969 U.S. tour, including the bloody clash between members of the Love Generation and a handful of Hell's Angels at a concert at the Altamont Speedway in San Francisco in the summer of 1969 that transformed a decade's dreams into disillusionment.

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Gallery Talk

Behind the Beyond: Psychedelic Posters and Fashion in San Francisco, 1966-71
Tuesday, August 15, 2017  | 12:30 p.m.
Presented by Gary Westford
Tours will commence in the Maribeth Collins Lobby
Free and open to the public


Financial Support

Financial support for the exhibition was provided by generous gifts from Collier Law, Salem, Oregon, and by general operating support grants from the City of Salem's Transient Occupancy Tax funds and the Oregon Arts Commission.

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