The telephone poles on New York Avenue used to rustle with fluorescent foliage — electric reds and nuclear yellows shouting at your eyes. “RARE ESSENCE.” “E.U.” “HOT, COLD, SWEAT.” “A SHOW YOU DON’T WANT TO MISS!!!” ¶ In the ’80s and ’90s, these were concert posters you simply couldn’t miss. They were the prime publicity tools for Washington’s thriving go-go scene and they were conceived at Globe Poster Printing Corp., the fabled 81-year-oldBaltimore press that brothers Bob and Frank Cicero finally lost to the recession in 2010. ¶ Dozens upon dozens of Globe posters will coat the walls the Corcoran Gallery of Art this month as a part of “Pump Me Up: D.C. Subculture of the 1980s,” an exhibition commemorating the graffiti, go-go and hardcore punk scenes native to the District. “Globe was the original street art of D.C.,” says Roger Gastman, the show’s curator. “Nobody else was giving go-go a visual identity.”
Former go-go promoter Ken “IcyIce” Moore certainly did his part to bolster that identity. Between 1988 and 1996, Moore says, he hung up around 1,000 Day-Glo posters in the streets of Washington each week — 400,000-ish posters in all.