Monday, August 3, 2009

Detroit Premiere - August 20th at the Henry Ford Museum

DETROIT PREMIERE OF "AMERICAN ARTIFACT" MOVIE FEATURES LOCAL ARTISTS MARK ARMINSKI AND GARY GRIMSHAW

"American Artifact: The Rise of American Rock Poster Art", the documentary about the history and resurgence of American rock poster art, is scheduled to have it’s Deroit premiere on Thursday, August 20th at the Henry Ford Museum in the Anderson Theater.

The movie, which premiered in San Francisco in June, features two local rock poster artists, Mark Arminski and Gary Grimshaw.

"Mark and Gary were both very important parts of the history of this art form", explains director Merle Becker.

"In the ‘60s, when San Francisco was starting to showcase such acts as Janis Joplin and Jimi Hendrix, there was also a very vibrant dance concert scene happening in Detroit. Places like the Grande Ballroom had this incredible psychedelic scene going on that often gets overlooked when people talk about ‘60s rock".

Detroit artist Gary Grimshaw, among others, was responsible for a large number of posters and flyers that were done for the Grande Ballroom. In the movie, Gary recalls how he became involved in doing rock posters:

"I was friends with Rob Tyner (the lead singer of the MC5), and they were the first act to play the Grande. So, Rob suggested to the club owner that I do the first poster", explained Gary. "And, I just kept doing them from there."

Gary has gone on to do hundreds of posters, handbills, and flyers, which have also served as inspiration for Detroit artist Mark Arminski to follow in his steps.

"I’ve always been drawn to this type of art" explains Mark. "I used to sit in my classes in high school, and instead of paying attention, I used to draw my own fake handbills based on Gary’s styles".

Mark went on to design posters for acts like Iggy Pop, Kid Rock, Siouxsie and The Banshees, and Patti Smith.

Both Mark and Gary can be seen in books like "The Art of Modern Rock", and they have been celebrated in the rock community for years. Mark has also recently assembled a collection of his work which is also on display at Detroit’s Henry Ford Museum as part of their "Rock Stars’ Cars and Guitars 2" exhibit.

Tickets to the movie are $15, and include admission to Mark Arminski’s show. They are available at the door. The movie starts at 7p.

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