Rick Griffin Heart & Torch

Heart and Torch: Rick Griffin’s Transcendence (co-curated with Greg Escalante)
Laguna Art Museum, Laguna Beach CA.
June 24 to Sept 30, 2007

Heart and Torch: Rick Griffin’s Transcendence , the artist’s first major retrospective and solo museum exhibition, opened on June 24, 2007. A cult figure that set the iconographic terrain for the 1960s and 1970s counterculture, in his art Griffin expressed idealism and hope along with a darker side that perfectly embodied the contradictions of the era with its mixture of hedonism, politics, and avant-garde expression.

The exhibition, which included some 140 paintings, drawings, posters, album covers, and artifacts, surveyed thirty years of Griffin’s work from the 1960s until his death in 1991. The accompanying 156-page catalogue, published in association with Gingko Press, is the first publication to address Griffin’s impact on the surf, psychedelic rock, and born-again Christian movements.

Heart and Torch: Rick Griffin’s Transcendence was organized for Laguna Art Museum by Susan M. Anderson, and co-curated by guest curators Greg Escalante and Doug Harvey with curatorial consultant Gordon McClelland.