Janis Joplin's Psychedelic Porsche Headed to Auction - Rolling Stone
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Janis Joplin’s Psychedelic Porsche Headed to Auction

Rock legend’s 1965 vehicle, which features mural depicting “History of the Universe,” is expected to bring over $400,000 at December sale

Janis JoplinJanis Joplin


Janis Joplin

Janis Joplin’s psychedelic car – a pearl-white 1965 Porsche 365c 1600 Cabriolet painted with a kaleidoscopic Flower Power mural – is heading to auction this December as part of RM Sotheby’s “Driven By Disruption” sale. The vehicle is expected to sell for more than $400,000, The Guardian reports. 

Joplin purchased the Porsche secondhand in 1968, recruiting Big Brother and the Holding Company roadie Dave Richards to add the flashy paint job, which depicts the “History of the Universe” with images of butterflies and jellyfish along with Joplin and the band. 

According to Sotheby’s, Joplin owned the car until her death in October 1970, with manager Albert Grossman driving the distinctive ride for several years after. In the early Nineties, the vehicle was “restored to its 1960s luster” and displayed at Cleveland’s Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, where it’s resided for the past two decades. 

“Janis drove everywhere, all around San Francisco and down to Los Angeles when she was recording there,” Joplin’s sister and biographer Laura told Sotheby’s. “Wherever Janis went in the car, her fans recognized it. When she parked it and returned, there was always at least one note under the wipers.”

“Besides Janis’ music and legacy, her Porsche is the most visual and important piece of memorabilia that exists,” Joplin’s brother Michael add. “Like most people and their car of choice, her Porsche is a direct link to Janis. She drove it everywhere – and with everyone that was anyone in the San Francisco music scene – with the top down and her feathers flying. Her music, life and car are a part of rock and roll history.”

The “Driven By Disruption” sale will take place December 10th at RM Sotheby’s in New York City. The event will feature “30 creatively-styled and pioneering motor cars and select automotive-themed artwork.”

In This Article: Janis Joplin


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