Wednesday, July 18, 2007


It is 3 days later, but the Rick Griffin exhibit at the Laguna Art Museum is still commandeering much of my thoughts. Since visiting my first art museums as a child, i've always been fascinated by the recognizable individual strokes viewable in original works. I think of the artist in the heat of creation... this color here, this texture there. Considering Griffin's state of mind during much of his creation, the up close perspective is especially interesting. Frantic cross-hatching and exploding colors.
Griffin was a very prolific artist...Surfer Magazine comic in SoCal, psychedelic poster and album cover artist in San Fran, underground comic with R. Crumb and Zap Comix, psychedelic Christian artist and soulful artist of waves with surfboard as his brush.

Some highlights from the show:
-A childhood friend's closet door with an emerging mural of Griffin's seminal surf character, Murphy.

Murphy even made the cover of Surfer Magazine-1962

-a surfboard that Griffin painted and surfed frequently...i thought about the wild things that went through his head while he rode this board.

-many many original ink and board drawings of everything from Murphy to concert posters.

-a Griffin cartoon of The Beatles

-large psychedelic Christian oil-paintings created after Griffin was born again.

Surfer Magazine insert-1971

Murphy's Mystic Eye

Movie Poster for John Severson's last surf movie, "Pacific Vibrations"...1970. I've been trying to view this movie for years, even going as far as asking Severson himself. No copies are available because the music rights were never secured. Of course the exhibit included an excerpt making me want to see it even more. This large original oil painting was on display.

Excerpt from "Pacific Vibrations"... the only footage of Griffin painting that exists.

Trailer for "Pacific Vibrations"

Aoxomoxoa...Grateful Dead album cover........A Griffin created palindrome

Rick Griffin Resources:
Laguna Art Museum
Rick Griffin Galleries and bio
Article about the exhibit

I will attend this exhibit again soon. I could spend 24 hours in there and not feel satiated.


1 comment:

Cali Bound said...

Much of the really amazing stuff is not available as an image online. You should fly out here for this one. pretty special!