This iconic Mercury Seven color lithograph, by artist George Bishop, is a signed limited edition collector's piece celebrating America's seven first space pioneers; the seven chosen astronauts for Project Mercury and the race to space with the Soviet Union.
At that point in time, no person had even attempted to reach space. There was no guarantee that the Mercury project would work; yet these men had volunteered to be put their lives on the line for their country and science. Alan Shepard, Gus Grissom, John Glenn, Deke Slayton, Scott Carpenter, Wally Schirra, Gordon Cooper were devoted, fearless, diligent, and bold — all the heroic attributes that Tom Wolfe waxes poetically about in “The Right Stuff.”
The poster vividly depicts an historic Redstone rocket at the moment of lift off. In the plumes of the rocket's exhaust are the portraits of these seven courageous men, with the moon in the upper background.
This large lithograph was conceived 28 years ago to raise seed money for the Mercury Foundation. It is hand-signed in pencil by the astronauts largely and clearly next to his mission patch. Gus Grissom did not have the opportunity to participate in the signing having died tragically in 1967 in the fire that consumed the Apollo 1 team during a preflight simulation. Instead, his wife, Betty Grissom, has signed the lithograph over his mission patch in his memory and for the benefit of the Mercury Foundation.
This poster was issued in two limited editions; this is the much rarer of the two printings, an edition of only 125 prints. The poster is signed "AP 27/125", making this the 27th print in the edition.
The condition of this lithograph is excellent. Paper is healthy with no tears. And original color is still in tact with no fading. The signatures at bottom have been verified as original signatures, not copies or autopen reproductions. Signatures are in pencil.
The poster is artfully presented framed with two additional photographs of the original Mercury 7 astronauts at top left and right corners. Framing is to conservation standards, with UV glass and a custom-built wooden frame.