The dead are alive! And they’re more rejuvenated than ever. It was believed that in 1995, when prophetic guitarist and singer, Jerome “Jerry” John Garcia, died of a heart attack, that the Grateful Dead would no longer exist. That, strangely enough, was not to be the case.


It is now 2018, and the legacy of the Grateful Dead still permeates through our culture. When you log onto Facebook and see an ad for the newest Dead & Company tour, or when you see a picture on Instagram of actor Jonah Hill wearing a vintage Grateful Dead “Lithuania” shirt, or even when you watch Martin Scorsese’s documentary “Long Strange Trip,” you think to yourself, “who are the Grateful Dead and why are they following me?” Well, it goes beyond just t-shirts on celebrities, it has more to do with the art itself. The Dead weren’t just known for their music, but also for the artwork affiliated with them. From their abstract album covers to the symbols they used, to the art their fans, the “Deadheads,” made, they created another layer in their counter-cultural revolution.


 photo // Grateful Dead Facebook


The art they created proved to stand the test of time, most notably the “dancing bears,” the “steal your face” skull that brazenly displays a lightning bolt flashing through its elongated cranium, the incredibly famous “skull and roses” skeleton, to their “Terrapin Station” dancing turtles, and of course their legendary concert posters. These images have been reused and re-purposed since their genesis, even more so recently than ever. Artists like Jackson Green, whose “Together We Can Rebuild the Rave Scene” re-purpose of the classic lightning bolt skull shows what a real impact The Dead still has on our culture.


GQ Magazine picked up on this trend, so they ran a feature article about two unique Deadheads, known simply as Online Ceramics. Alix Ross and Elijah Funk, the two leading pioneers in the Grateful Dead inspired the street-wear world. Forming circa 2016, the duo has been cranking out extremely popular shirts; with every new season comes a new Dead and Company tour, as well as a new collection from Online Ceramics, and they do it well. Using classic ideas such as tie-dying, as well as utilizing lyrics from the Grateful Dead; Alix and Elijah take their own art style and incorporate these classic lyrics and styles into every shirt they do. And not only do they print and design shirts by hand, but they also do custom artwork for bands, brands, and anything else you might want, all using their unique Deadhead style. So when you’re on the lot this summer to see John Mayer perform with Dead & Co. make sure to look out for any Online Ceramics gear.

photo // courtesy of


Their legendary reputation is everywhere. You can’t go anywhere anymore without seeing something inspired by the Dead. Their art, and fan art, is all over Instagram, Facebook, Etsy, eBay, Twitter, even on the streets you’re sure to sooner or later run into a mural or graffiti tag pertaining to them. If you’re interested in following the Grateful Dead culture today, follow @Deadhead, @fromthelot, @Onlineceramics, and @petrifiedgoods who purchases second-hand Patagonia gear and hand embroiders them with dates and locations of Grateful Dead concerts, as well as sewing on custom patches. He is available for custom work through social media.


photo //@petrifiedgoods 


It isn’t often a band creates such a momentous movement that spans decades, so the fact that we are able, in our culture today, to still celebrate the legacy of the Dead is truly a remarkable feat. We can do so much more than just listen to the music though, we can also appreciate their art, and their fans’ art, both old and new.


top image // NPR