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Bill Graham’s personal Fillmore & Avalon Collection to be auctioned November 9

Collection is part of the Julien’s Auctions “Icons and Idols” Rock n Roll extravaganza at the Hard Rock Café Times Square, New York City on November 9th 2018.

SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA, UNITED STATES, November 2, 2018 / -- There are no rock poster collections as iconic as the Fillmore-Avalon collection. Commissioned in the late 60s by Bill Graham, Father of the ‘San Francisco Sound’, the posters publicized the rock concerts he promoted at the Fillmore Auditorium, and those that Chet Helms promoted at the Avalon Ballroom.

Distinguished by their swirling colors and flowing, liquid letters, the LSD-esque designs broke new ground in the art world and represent the very first examples of psychedelic art.

Notable artists, such as Wes Wilson and Rick Griffin, swept the world by the storm and the posters drew huge crowds to Bill Graham’s concerts.
Performers like Jefferson Airplane, Jim Morrison and the Doors, John Lee Hooker, Grateful Dead, Chuck Berry, Count Basie and Janice Joplin were just some of the headliners that the posters promoted.

In 1968 Bill Graham gave his Collection of 234 Fillmore and Avalon posters to San Francisco’s most notable artist of the time, Paul Olsen, of Light my Fire’ and ‘A Day in the Life’ fame. His own successful poster company, Funky Features, also created the hugely popular Zodiac series.

Olsen himself went on to rock fame, designing the seven Robin Trower album covers, which earned him four gold and one platinum album, and from there he cemented his place in Hollywood designing blockbuster titles for movies including “Die Hard,” “The Abyss,” “Back to the Future II & III,” the “Imagine” logo, and “Terminator 2”, amongst dozens of others. He is also the artist who painted the original movie Starship Enterprise in the 1979 “Star Trek: The Motion Picture” in pearlescent paints.

Olsen has lovingly maintained the Fillmore and Avalon Collection, which comprises 234 pieces of historic poster art, for over 50 years and now looks forward to it finding a new home with another dedicated collector.

“This Collection tells the story of a unique period in history that gave birth to a whole new style of art and self-expression,” stated Olsen.

“The art also has its own colorful stories to tell. For example, one of the Victor Moscoso posters, which was displayed in my house in the 60s, has whiskey splash marks made by Janis Joplin when she used to visit and walk around, gesturing flamboyantly with her bottle of Southern Comfort, after playing a gig.”

The Collection, with its unique provenance that goes directly back to Bill Graham, has been valued by the Whitney Museum at $600,000. Olsen has stamped and signed the back of each poster authenticating its provenance, thus making each poster a true work of art, recognized as such by the art world and copyright law. No longer is each poster simply a poster, but an individual work of art.

It will be auctioned in lots at the Icons and Idols auction on November 9. However prior to the auction date, offers in excess of $500,000 will be considered for the entire Collection.

Olsen will donate all the funds towards Project Enterprise – his initiative for rebuilding the Starship Enterprise by the original Paramount team.

The Collection can be viewed at and on Julien’s Auctions website.
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Paul Olsen
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