The Museum at Bethel Woods Brings Psychedelic Francisco to the East Coast with New Exhibit

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The Museum at Bethel Woods Brings Psychedelic Francisco to the East Coast with New Exhibit

On April 4th, The Museum at Bethel Woods, located at the site of the 1969 Woodstock festival, will open for the 2020 season with the Special Exhibit Lights, Color, Fashion: Psychedelic Posters and Patterns of 1960s San Francisco. This exhibit showcases a phenomenal ensemble of San Francisco rock posters and fashion from the kaleidoscopic years of 1964 to 1972, gathered by collector Gary Westford.

Highlights of the Exhibit include rock posters by all of the "Big Five" poster artists: Victor Moscoso, Rick Griffin, Wes Wilson, Stanley Mouse, and Alton Kelley. Additional works by a variety of other artists round out the collection and add unique styles and perspectives not often seen.

Clothing ranging from designer to street fashion will illustrate the sense of self-expression of the West Coast scene. Westford, a resident of Bay Area during this time period, has never lost his passion for those special years and the art that emerged from the dance halls and boutiques of the West Coast. He has spent the last five decades building his outstanding collection and is thrilled to bring it to the East Coast this spring. Westford stated, "I began collecting psychedelic posters in 1968 while I was living in San Francisco and attending SF State College... For me, the posters were emblematic of an exciting new style of poster-making that was 'outside the box' of traditional poster forms that incorporated the use of Pop and Op Art, and Art Nouveau style and imagery. For me, the posters were (and they remain) graphically and visually stunning." Complementing the exhibit is a light show by renowned San Francisco light artist Bill Ham to immerse the senses.

The Museum opens on Saturday, April 4th. A private brunch and special exhibition preview is scheduled for Bethel Woods Members that morning; the Special Exhibit will open to the general public at 10:00 AM through 7:00 PM. While the exhibits are usually self-guided, free docent tours of the Main Exhibit will be available. Additional programming on opening day includes a free talk with Museum Curators alongside collector Gary Westford in the Event Gallery at 11:00 AM. At 7:00 PM, an immersive light and sound lounge with music, food, cocktails, and a unique lightshow experience will be open to the public for an additional cost.

"2020 is shaping up to be another exciting year at Bethel Woods. The spring opening of the Museum and upcoming special and outdoor exhibits are just a glimpse into the memorable year ahead! We invite all of our friends and supporters back to the garden all year long," said Eric Frances, Chief Executive Officer.

The Museum at Bethel Woods explores the social, political, cultural, and musical transformations of the 1960s. It features an award-winning permanent collection, evolving exhibits, and engaging programs.

An outdoor photography exhibit will open on Earth Day, April 22nd, in recognition of the 50th anniversary of the first Earth Day in 1970. Earth In Focus: A Celebration of our Dynamic Planet will feature inspiring photography of our beautiful planet from photographers around the world.

Launching this spring is an interactive Augmented Reality Tour. Guests will experience sounds of Woodstock - including authentic music, crowd sounds, and stage announcements - on the grounds where it happened.

On June 4th, a new exhibit examining the Women's Rights movement of the '60s will open in celebration of the centennial anniversary of women's suffrage in the Crossroads Exhibit Gallery. It will present objects and interpretation related to the events and people at the forefront of the mid-century movement for gender equality, and examine where the fight for women's rights is headed in 2020.

Located just a short walk from the Museum, the Bindy Bazaar Trails allow guests to explore the historic marketplace of the Woodstock Festival. Artist Carol Hummel's large-scale public art installation highlights the art, craft, and sense of joy embodied by the Bindy Bazaar and the Festival itself.

New for 2020, The Museum will offer Sensory-Friendly Museum Days for visitors of all ages with autism, complex developmental disabilities, or sensory sensitives on the 2nd Saturday of each month from 9:00 - 10:30 AM, April to December. Lighting and sound features in the Main Exhibit will be augmented and trained staff will be on-hand to guide guests through their experience.

On display through December 31st, "Lights, Color, Fashion" is included in regular museum admission. Special Exhibition-only admission is just $5.00.

For more information about Bethel Woods Center for the Arts and to plan your museum visit, please go online

Museum Hours:

April 4-26
Thursday-Sunday; 10 AM - 5 PM
Please note The Museum will offer extended hours on April 4 & 5 as part of Opening Weekend: 10 AM - 7 PM.

April 27-November 1
7 Days a Week; 10 AM - 5 PM

November 2-December 23
Thursday-Sunday; 10 AM - 5 PM

December 26-31
Saturday-Thursday; 10 AM - 5 PM

NOTE: Please call ahead to verify museum hours on concert days. Access to the grounds is closed on Pavilion concert days. The Monument continues to be open to visitors seven days a week, all year long via West Shore Road. The Museum will be closed from May 29-31 for Mountain Jam, on Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve Day, and Christmas Day.

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