It's been nearly 17 years since the Grateful Dead band leader and guitarist Jerry Garcia died, leaving behind him a vast discography and legions of "Deadhead" fans. Naturally, Garcia's immense legacy has been felt at auction over the years.
A 2007 sale in Garcia's hometown of San Francisco saw his Travis Bean guitar bring an impressive $312,000. Elsewhere, an LSD-inspired concert poster by founding band member Ron "Pig Pen" McKernan, entitled "Can You Pass the Acid Test" from January 22, 1966, brought $30,000.
Auctioneer Bonhams even devoted a whole sale to Jerry Garcia and the Grateful Dead, entitled More Skeletons from the Closet, in October 2008. Now the company is set to repeat the experience by hosting another dedicated auction in San Francisco on May 8.
The Visions of Garcia auction marks the 35th anniversary of the Grateful Dead's famous Cornell show, heralded as the best Grateful Dead concert of all time. One-of-a-kind memorabilia, including rare artworks by Garcia and guitars designed especially for him, will be for sale.
Among the auction's highlights is Mood River, one of only five known original oil paintings produced by Garcia, circa 1959. Jerry gifted the artwork to his brother many years ago. The painting depicts a blue-yellow sky, pink hills and multi-coloured terrain.
It is estimated at $100,000-$150,000. This is more than twice as much as Garcia's motorcycle (pictured), which is expected to sell for $40,000-60,000.
Considering the Grateful Dead's past auction performances, this estimate shouldn't be an issue for Deadhead collectors - especially as many of them are members of the "baby boomer" generation, with more disposable income than ever before.