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by Eric Ahlberg
Thursday, Sep. 08, 2005 at 6:43 PM
email@example.com 310-401-0339 850 Brooks Ave, Venice, 90291
The Center for the Study of Political Graphics, SPARC, and The Venice Arts Council Present
A Venice People’s Centennial Celebration
POSTERS OF PEACE PRESS
September 10 - October 9th, 2005
SPARC - 685 Venice Boulevard, Venice CA 90291
Opening Reception September 10 2005 5-8pm
Gallery hours M-Th 10am-4pm Fri 10am-9pm Sat-Sun 1pm-5pm
front-3.jpg, image/jpeg, 888x1240
What do Timothy Leary, Huey Newton, Brian Wilson and the Free Venice Collective have in common? They were all clients of the Peace Press, an alternative print shop that produced posters, books and other printed matter from 1967-1987. The Press operated for twenty years, a long time for an art collective, a very long time for an anti-war group, and an extraordinary length of time for a print shop whose founders did not know how to print.
An exciting exhibition of over 70 rare posters produced by Peace Press will be on display beginning September 10 as part of the Venice People’s Centennial Celebration at the SPARC gallery at 685 Venice Boulevard. The Press had a intimate connection with Venice as almost all of its founders and early workers lived in Venice and were tied into the politics of the community, as were many of the artists whose work rolled off the Peace Press machines.
Forged in the furnace of the anti-Vietnam War movement, Peace Press evolved into a business that produced high-quality commercial work while continuing to print for virtually every progressive cause taken up in LA. More than 300 organizations --including the United Farm Workers, Black Panther Party, Alliance for Survival, American Indian Movement, Earth Day, the Free Venice Collective, and various groups advocating solidarity with Central America-- had their posters printed at the Press.
Many of the posters are part of the permanent collection of the Center for the Study of Political Graphics (CSPG), an educational and research archive in Los Angeles which contains the largest number of post-World War II political posters in the United States. Others are on loan from private owners.
The captivating graphics and outspoken political messages of these posters bring alive the issues of the dynamic '60s and '70s, (which have strong resonance today), while demonstrating the intersection of Southern California’s artistic and political movement from that historic era.
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