Lee Burbage surveys the winners of the third annual Savannah Stopover poster exhibition.
The way music makes you feel is entirely subjective. No matter how descriptive the writing, it’s difficult to marry the visual with the sheer emotional and aural experience of a band’s sound. However, when they do meet—as they do in the third annual Savannah Stopover poster exhibition—there’s beautiful music, indeed.
In its brief three-year run, the Savannah Stopover Music Festival has invited local artists to design a poster for one of the bands playing that year. A juried panel narrows the pool of posters down to the top 10, then the rest is up to the fans. Anyone can go online and vote for their favorite. The popular vote counts for a one-third of the overall score.
This year’s winners, announced at the Opening Night event at the Ships of the Sea Museum’s North Garden, covered headliners of Montreal as well as local bands Whaleboat and Bear Fight, and ranged from highly stylized illustrated portraits to candy-coated neon clouds shooting confetti. The winner’s of the third annual poster contest are:
Directors Choice: Snow Mine
First Place: Braids
Second Place: The Last Bison
Third Place: Ben Sollee
What’s more, the opening night exhibition connected the traveling bands with the hometown artists, many of whom were among the crowd listening to The Last Bison and Ben Sollee. We even caught sight of The Last Bison snapping photos in front of their winning poster after their set.
As Stopover evolves into a major musical event, the band posters will grow increasingly collectible, much the way Bill Graham’s original posters for bands like the Grateful Dead and Big Brother and the Holding Company, which were just garnering notice playing San Francisco’s Fillmore during the 1960s.