More life off hope
You may have seen the recent item in the BeloJo’s “Lifebleat” section announcing that an original vintage rock poster by a legendary Providence artist, the Mad Peck, sold for a nice chunk of change at Christy’s auction house in New York.
Around here, the artist is known for “The Providence Poster.” Doubtless you’ve seen it or at least one of the postcards with the same image. You know, the black and white classic comix-style four-panel, in which it is noted that in Our Little Towne, “Friendship is a one-way street” and the “rich folks live on Power Street” but most of us “live off Hope.”
Of course, the Mad Peck (and his doppelganger, Doctor Oldie) is a charter Casa Diablo regular and mentor to generations of local artists, musicians, and over-educated layabouts. He created the poster with a couple of other towering Providence cultural figures and respected authors, Doc “Les” Daniels and I.C. Lotz (a.ka. the fabulous Ms. Vicky).
An acknowledged classic that first appeared (as an over-sized postcard) in 1978 and as a poster in the ’80s, these works are highly prized and pretty rare these days. Here is what the Mad Peck had to say when asked about the heyday of the Providence Poster: “It began appearing on student walls all over the East Side. The upper crust started framing them. The Brown Graduate Center Pub had it reproduced as a mural. It graced the offices of a mayor (yes, you know who) and a university president and showed up in a made-for-TV movie.” Basically, if you logged a number of college undergraduate years at Brown or RISD at that time, you had to have a Providence Poster.
In 2007, you can score a Providence poster for yourself, but more importantly, get in on the brandy-new beautifully colorized version (take our word for it — we’ve seen it, you want it). The lush colorization was done by Mr. Monkey Productions, and the Mad Peck boasts, “If you adjust for inflation, it will cost you just about the same as the black and white one did in 1980.”
You can find the Providence Poster at: Picture This; the Brown University Book Store; Cellar Stories; Dryden Galleries; Myopic Books & Curiosities (all in Providence); and the Time Capsule in Cranston (just for you suburbanites and hip comix collectors). Get one and don’t be sorry.
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: Phillipe And Jorge
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