Guy Peellaert. Robert Zimmerman, His Journeys and Adventures : New York Bob (Phil Ochs, Bob Dylan, Judy Collins, Joan Baez, Allen Ginsberg) from the Rock Dreams series (1970-1973). Photomontage and paint on paper.
Washington Square was a mecca for folkies and Beat poets in the early 1960s, as witness Guy Peellaert’s sublime artwork—for his and Nik Cohn’s best-selling book Rock Dreams (1974)—of Bob Dylan, Joan Baez, Judy Collins, Allen Ginsberg, and Phil Ochs talking beside the park’s fountain. Looking at that springtime or summer image now, one wants to catch a glimpse of Llewyn Davis and Jean Berkey kissing (or more likely arguing) in the background.
“Itinerant minstrel, he sang and played as he travelled and, somewhere on the road his eyes opened wide and his soul was filled with purpose, a spirit of crusade. From that moment forward, his path was set and he bent himself to the ceaseless combat of tyrannies, the righting of wrongs and overthrow of hypocricies until peace and love should spread through all mankind. Thus when at last he reached New York he did not hesitate but rushed pellmell to Bleeker Street where his message might best be understood. In bars and dimlit cellars, he sang through his nose and preached, and all who heard him were thunderstruck.”