• Dark Art: Spectacular Illusions from the Golden Age of Magic At the height of the live-magic era, seeing was believing. On a nightly basis, heads were severed and reattached, horses levitated from the stage, and bullets were caught in mid-air. To advertise these impossible feats, magicians at the turn of the 20th century commissioned vividly illustrated posters, emblazoned with exotic-sounding names and ominously scowling faces, daring you to doubt them. Mo…
  • What's Behind the Widespread Obsession With Rock-Concert Screenprints Close your eyes and run your fingertips gently across the surface of a screenprint, and you can feel the layers of ink squeegeed there. Hold the sheet up to the light and look at it horizontally, and you can actually see those layers, rising and falling like pancaked mesas and valleys in some sort of psychedelic Southwest. That's what people mean when they say screenprints are tactile, when they w…
  • Return to 'The Crypt': Jack Davis Resurrects the Crypt-Keeper When iconic “Mad Magazine” illustrator Jack Davis launched his career in the early 1950s, he made a name for himself drawing nightmarish images for EC Comics titles such as “Tales From the Crypt.” Horror fans today still marvel at his towering and intricately detailed fiends—corrupt men with shadowy, crevassed faces; feral werewolves with saliva dripping from their fangs; hordes of slimy skeletal …
  • Psychedelic Poster Pioneer Wes Wilson on The Beatles, Doors, and Bill Graham Between 1966 and 1967, San Francisco rock poster artist Wes Wilson designed posters and handbills for the first Trips Festival, the last show by The Beatles, and dozens of concerts at the Avalon Ballroom and Fillmore Auditorium featuring everyone from The Association to Frank Zappa. Along the way, he defined the psychedelic poster, in which blocks of letters were used to create shapes, which seeme…
  • Poster Designer David Lance Goines Speaks I don’t collect posters. I don’t collect anything. I started making posters one at a time by hand in high school just for specific events, basically got going when I was a freshman. I still make them today, but they’re printed on a printing press now. I’ve made 221 posters, not including the ones I did in high school. Fundamentally, I believe that in order to be effective as opposed to artsy and n…