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This classic Grateful Dead Avalon Ballroom Concert Poster measures 24 x 36 inches or 61 x 90 cm.
Note: Beware of many cheap knock-offs of this poster. These are usually blurry due to the ink saturating the thin paper. The lettering is also not sharp and hard to read.
A poster advertising a Grateful Dead concert (September 16 & 17, 1966) at the Avalon Ballroom, designed by Stanley Mouse and Alton Kelley inspired by Edmund J. Sullivan's engraving, adorning the 26th stanza of the Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam, 1913. (Shown in other image.)
"Kelley and I had a job doing posters for the Avalon, and the promoter said: 'Do a poster for the Grateful Dead.' So we went to the library in San Francisco, just searching through old books. We came across the Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam, and in it was an old illustration that had that skull and roses character on it. We went: 'Whoa, look at that! That has Grateful Dead written all over it.' So we used it on that poster, which became the famous icon."
The icon came to adorn several Grateful Dead albums, including the live album, Grateful Dead, which, due to its cover, has come to be known as Skull & Roses or Skull Fuck in order to distinguish it from the Dead's eponymous debut album.
-Oh come with old Khayyam, and leave the Wise
To talk; one thing is certain, that Life flies;
One thing is certain, and the Rest is Lies;
The Flower that once has blown for ever dies.
(Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam, stanza 26, tr. Edward FitzGerald)