CHICAGO — Versions of what has been called the “most evocative logo of any band” — the Rolling Stones’ famous “tongue and lips” — might have been part of the city landscape this summer under a plan by local concert producer Jerry Mickelson.
Mickelson’s idea was to create lips in a exhibit similar to Chicago’s “Cows on Parade” sculpture series that would not only help promote his Rolling Stones memorabilia exhibit now at Navy Pier but raise money for charity by auctioning off the lips.
Citing the possibilities of “millions of selfies” being taken with the lips “placed throughout the city,” Mickelson of JAM Productions wrote a note to a friend of Mayor Rahm Emanuel that ended up in Emanuel’s private email account.
“Who doesn’t want to own the iconic Stones logo?” Mickelson wrote in the email that was obtained by the Sun-Times for a story about the mayor’s use of his private account. The friend, Lynn Lockwood, forwarded it to Emanuel, saying money could be raised for charity through the auction and sponsorship.
Emanuel seemed warm to the idea, replying that he thought arts and education would be two likely beneficiaries.
There was no immediate word on what happened to the idea. But it appears to be based on a similar effort in London last year in connection with the Rolling Stones “Exhibitionism” exhibit there that featured oversized statues of the lips-and-tongue logo.
The logo was designed in 1969 by then-London art student John Pasche at the request of Jagger, who reportedly had been impressed by an image of the long-tongued Hindu goddess Kali.
Pasche is quoted by Adweek as saying he was more inspired by the singer than the goddess.
“I went into this sort of wood-paneled boardroom, and there [Jagger] was. Face-to-face with him, the first thing you were aware of was the size of his lips and mouth,” Pasche said.
The artist originally was paid $77 though, he later sold the original logo for $92,500.