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American Artifact Documents Rise Of Rock Poster Art

By Veronica Murtagh in Arts & Entertainment on Jan 5, 2010 9:40PM

Before rock poster creators became sought-after illustrators, fielding Q&A sessions, exhibiting in gallery shows and producing what have become highly collectible pieces of visual music history, they were an underground community of talented pioneers working for little recognition and less pay. From it's origins amidst the classic rock shows of the '60s, to the photocopied punk flyers of the '80s, to the multi-color screenprints adorning the walls of indie rock venues across the nation today, forged on sweat, empty pockets and paint, rock poster art has evolved into a significant movement in American contemporary art.

American Artifact, a documentary directed by Merle Becker, traverses our great nation, interviewing notable rock poster artists from the movement's inception, through the young talents of today. Over 30 artists are featured, including Chicago's own Jay Ryan, Mat Daly, Steve Walters and Jim Pollock. The film is screening in select cities and hits the Gene Siskel Film Center on January 30. The screening will be followed by a Q&A panel with the Becker, Ryan, Daly, Walters and Pollock.

American Artifact, Saturday, January 30, at the Gene Siskel Film Center, 164 N State, 8 p.m., $10 public / $7 students / $5 members