Bob Seidemann

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Robert Emett (Bob) Seidemann (December 28, 1941 – November 27, 2017 [1][2]) was an American graphic artist and photographer.


Seidemann was born in Manhattan, New York, and grew up in Queens. He graduated from Manhattan High School of Aviation Trades and apprenticed with photographer Tom Caravaglia in NYC before heading west to San Francisco. There he found friends among the artists in North Beach and environs and began working as an artist himself. He collaborated with friends David Getz, Rick Griffin, Stanley Mouse and Alton Kelly, Big Brother and the Holding Company, George Hunter, The Charlatans, Janis Joplin and the Grateful Dead to create photographic images at the forefront of the popular and revolutionary culture of the time.

Although unpublished until her death, Seidemann's 1967 portraits of a semi-nude Janis Joplin earned him wide acclaim.

Seidemann also photographed The Grateful Dead a number of times during their peak, both for posters and album liners, as well as designing the covers for Jerry Garcia's debut solo album, Garcia, and The Grateful Dead's Wake of the Flood with Rick Griffin illustrating.

In 1969, Eric Clapton formed a new band and Seidemann was commissioned to create the cover for their album. Seidemann photographed a nude 11-year-old girl to create what would become his most famous and controversial work, titled "Blind Faith". Not only did it become the cover and title of Blind Faith the album, but the name of the band as well.

From 1974 till 1984 Seidemann produced more than 60 record album covers in Los Angeles, among them Jackson Browne's Late for the Sky and Neil Young's On the Beach.

From the late 1980s till 2000, Seidemann produced a portfolio of 302 aviation-themed photographs entitled "Airplane as Art". Striking abstract photographs of all manner of aircraft and environmental portraits of aircraft engineers, designers, and pilots make up the collection. “Airplane As Art” is in included in the Getty Museum Photography Collection, McDermott Library, UTDallas, and The Boeing Corporate Collection.

A portfolio sold at Sotheby's on October 12, 2000, for $236,750.[3]

His 1969 "Blind Faith" flush-mounted and signed chromogenic photo print, editioned (17/30), sold at Sotheby's New York on June 24, 2014(lot 20), at $17,500 (with buyer's premium).[4]


  1. ^ Smith, Harrison, "Bob Seidemann, photographer of Grateful Dead and Janis Joplin, dies at 75", Washington Post, Washington, D.C., published December 12, 2017 at 18:15 EDST.
  2. ^ Sandomir, Richard. "Bob Seidemann, 75, Photographer of Rock Stars and Aviators, Dies". New York Times. Retrieved 5 August 2019.
  3. ^ Caroline Krockow. "Art Market Watch".
  4. ^ Sotheby's New York. "Rock n' Roll History: Presley to Punk". Sotheby's. Retrieved June 24, 2014.

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