Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Show me the Monet!

I'm going to get my own Monet!

Amongst the jillion-and-one elements supporting The Dead’s Spring 2009 Tour is the artwork -- from the interactive spiral galaxy logo on the Tour’s home page, to the nifty musical minuteman dude on the Tour’s laminated working passes, to the designs on the Tour T-shirts sold at the merch stands in the lobby.  And if you’ve been to a gig lately, you’ve likely noticed a particularly fine new T-shirt, quite unlike any we’ve seen before...

In advance of each tour, Merch-Maestro George Bross solicits artwork possibilities from various folks, from which he picks the designs that become the tour's trophy T-shirts.  This time around, one of the submitted artworks came from Monet Weir, Bobby’s 11-year-old daughter: it’s a lovely, blossomy, viney-twiney take on the familiar skeleton-and-roses motif, done up in yer classic blue, red and white.  Monet thought of the drawing she gave George as just a suggestion, really: a rough idea, a sketch, a template if you will, which -- should it by happy chance be chosen for a T-shirt -- would then be whisked away and turned over to some professional-type artiste person to be turned into professional-type artwork.  But Maestro George, in one of those moments of insight, foresight, and white-light clarity, swiftly perceived that Monet’s drawing was not a sketch or suggestion or template for any artwork at all, oh no -- Monet’s drawing WAS the artwork.  So he had a bunch of T-shirts made up, and, well, hotcakes should only sell this well.

Trouble was, they were only available in Children’s Size L, because the thinking was that it was a children’s shirt.  Now Children’s Size L fits some women but not all, and no men to speak of, which to no one’s surprise except maybe George’s left a whole lot of disappointed Deadheads at the merch tables.  Well, positive group-think has been applied to this pickle, and the cognitive leap has been made from “shirt for a kid” to “shirt by a kid”, and now Monet’s wonderful design is available on T-shirts in sizes to accommodate pretty much everyone. Get one for yourself (and your inner child) today.