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 Gary Grimshaw  (1946 - 2014)

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Lived/Active: Michigan/California      Known for: psychedelic music performance posters, album cover designs

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from Auction House Records.
Joe Walsh and Special Guest Bob Seger, Walker Sports Arena, Muskegon, Michigan, final artwork
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Biography from Sage Collections:
Gary Grimshaw, Born February 25, 1946, Died January 13, 2014

Grimshaw was born in Detroit, and raised in Lincoln Park, Michigan.

In Detroit, promoter Russ Gibb hired him to perform light shows during rock performances at his new Grande Ballroom. Grimshaw designed the first poster for the Grande Ballroom, for a show on October 7, 1966, featuring the MC5 and billed as "A Dance Concert in the San Francisco Style". At a party about the same time, he met John Sinclair, a poet and jazz critic who had just been released from six months in jail on a marijuana conviction. That was the first time that Sinclair heard the MC5 perform, and he quickly became the band's manager and political mentor. Soon, Grimshaw was also designing posters for other bands performing at the Grande Ballroom and at other Detroit area rock music venues. His poster style was "psychedelic and heady, heavily embroidered with bright colors and flowing text."

Grimshaw did many posters for the MC5 and worked with the Detroit Artists Workshop, Translove, the Hill House commune in Ann Arbor, Michigan, and later for the The Rainbow Peoples Party, successor to the White Panthers. He designed a cover for the MC5's inaugural album Kick Out the Jams, but it was replaced by a collage using photography by Joel Brodsky.

He also designed the sleeve for the band's second single, Looking at You, later included on the 1970 album Back in the USA. In the heyday of the Grande Ballroom, Grimshaw and Carl Lundgren were the two artists primarily responsible for its rock poster art. During that period, he did posters for performances by the Jimi Hendrix Experience, Cream, Canned Heat, The Who and many others.

He was the art director for the Ann Arbor Blues and Jazz Festival in 1972 and 1973, and did posters for the festival in 1992 and 2000. He worked for Creem Magazine as an associate art director from 1976 to 1984.

In 1988, Grimshaw designed the cover for Iggy Pop's album Instinct. In 1993, he designed a limited edition poster for the "Motor City Joint Show" at the Ubiquity Gallery in Ferndale, Michigan, highlighting work by Detroit poster artists Stanley Mouse, Wes Wilson, Mark Arminski and Grimshaw himself. During these years Grimshaw created posters for Beck, the White Stripes, The Greenhornes, the Dirtbombs and the Raveonettes, and for a 2004 tribute concert in memory of guitarist Fred "Sonic" Smith of the MC5.

In December, 1999, the Detroit Free Press named him to its list of Michigan's 100 greatest artists and entertainers of the 20th century. He lived in San Francisco and Oakland, California from 1990 to 2004, when he relocated back to Detroit. From 1988 to 1991, he was art director of ArtRock, a concert poster producer.

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