Fly Jesus

Fly Jesus

Hollywood: Internationally/Cross, ca. early-1970s. Lithograph. 17 x 21 3/4 in. Wear along edges and 1 in. closed tear at bottom left edge; else very good. Item #5436

San Francisco in the 1960s is most frequently associated with the hippie movement and the so-called "Summer of Love." A lesser known spiritual movement sprouted alongside it: a loose network of Evangelical groups eventually referred to as Jesus people or Jesus freaks (a term which, at the time, was not seen as pejorative). Although the movement first gained traction in San Francisco, particularly Haight-Ashbury, its nucleus quickly became Los Angeles. Leaders such as Arthur Blessitt and Tony and Susan Alamo set up shop on Sunset Strip, preaching on the street and opening coffee shops where converts congregated. As the posters in this list evidence, the movement embraced the prevailing countercultural aesthetics of the time. Music festivals, underground newspapers, and merchandise such as pins, posters, and t-shirts were all used to recruit, cohere, and build the movement. The movement spread to northern Europe, where it remains active in Germany.

This glossy poster depicts a cloud-scattered sky. In the top left corner is text which reads “fly the friendly skies of…” In the top right corner the City of God sits upon clouds. A red cross and white and blue rays beam down to the bottom of the page, suggesting that an embrace of Jesus is a runway to heaven.

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