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• • • Being a journal by artist and designer John Coulthart, cataloguing interests, obsessions and passing enthusiasms.

Archive for the ‘Hipgnosis’ tag

 

Solstice sky

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Tyrrhenian Sea and Solstice Sky by Danilo Pivato. Danilo Pivato’s marvellous photograph of the December sun was NASA’s winter solstice photo of the day for 2014, although it actually dates from 2005. (And they’d also posted it twice before.) The multiplicity of heavenly bodies makes me think of the Hipgnosis cover for Harmony of the […]

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Collagescapes

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Oliver Wasow‘s artwork for It’s All Around You (2004), an album by US group Tortoise, contains some fine examples of disjunctive (Surrealist, if you must) collage landscapes. This is a sub-genre of collage that I’ve always enjoyed, especially when it’s carefully done, and I was wondering recently whether Wasow had done anything similar for other […]

Posted in {art}, {collage}, {music}, {photography}, {surrealism} | 3 comments »

 


Polaroids

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I was given a Polaroid Instant Camera some years ago, not the cult SX-70, a later model. I still have it somewhere but never used it very much. The film cartridges were still available in shops, but at around £1 a shot Polaroids always seemed like a costly indulgence unless you had some specific use […]

Posted in {art}, {books}, {music}, {photography}, {television} | 2 comments »

 


Weekend links 239

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The Crystal Gazer (or The Magic Crystal, 1904) by Gertrude Käsebier. • “I had to resort to extreme violence”: how Hipgnosis revolutionised the album sleeve. Aubrey Powell, last surviving member of the design team, talks to Joe Muggs. • Mixes of the week: Radio Belbury: Programme 14; The Conjurer’s Hexmas by SeraphicManta; Secret Mix 139 […]

Posted in {architecture}, {art}, {books}, {comics}, {design}, {electronica}, {film}, {horror}, {music}, {occult}, {photography}, {politics}, {science fiction}, {technology} | 1 comment »

 


Moorcock: Faith, Hope and Anxiety

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Photo of the author by Linda Moorcock. I mentioned a few days ago that I had another new piece of work to reveal, and this is it, a poster/promotional piece for Russell Wall’s forthcoming documentary about Michael Moorcock. The main challenge with one was to create something that would give a sense of Moorcock’s extensive […]

Posted in {art}, {books}, {design}, {fantasy}, {film}, {magazines}, {science fiction}, {work} | 3 comments »

 


Peter Christopherson Photography & The Art of John Balance Collected

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Look at it this way / In ten years’ time / Who’ll care? / Who’ll even remember? Coil, The Dreamer Is Still Asleep Coil’s John Balance died ten years ago today, bringing an end to two decades of a project that, in its earliest stages, was his own solo musical venture. Ten years on, Coil […]

Posted in {art}, {books}, {gay}, {music}, {occult}, {photography} | 2 comments »

 


A tabled question

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Work-related research this week had me wondering who it was that first thought of turning Battersea Power Station into a table. For the past few days I’ve been looking at a lot of the illustration work that George Hardie produced for the Hipgnosis album covers in the 70s and 80s; I’ll explain why in due […]

Posted in {art}, {collage}, {design}, {music}, {sculpture} | 7 comments »

 


René Magritte album covers

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Beck-Ola (1969) by The Jeff Beck Group. Painting: The Listening Room (second version, 1958). An inevitable post considering the shape of the week, and also a continuation of an occasional series about paintings used as album cover art. Given Magritte’s continuing popularity I’m sure these can’t be the only examples, especially when his work had […]

Posted in {art}, {design}, {music}, {painting}, {surrealism} | 1 comment »

 


Monsieur René Magritte, a film by Adrian Maben

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Until the end of his life, [Magritte] preferred to take the tram. Now there’s an attitude I approve of. George Melly in his BBC film about Surrealism mentions visiting Magritte at his home in Brussels, and we see Magritte’s house at the beginning of Adrian Maben’s 50-minute film about the artist’s life and work. Maben’s […]

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The Triangular Lodge again

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Artwork & photography by Abbie Stephens, Zoë Maxwell. Design by Thomas Caslin. Passing through a record shop the day after looking at photos of the Winchester Mystery House I couldn’t help but notice this sleeve for the debut album by British band Temples. Yesterday I described Sarah Winchester’s house as a folly, which it is, […]

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The Art of Tripping, a documentary by Storm Thorgerson

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How does this sound? 100 minutes of solidly informative documentary about the use of drugs by artists from the early 19th century on; a production that calls upon a remarkable cast of contributors (see below), with music by David Gilmour, and the whole thing “devised and directed” by Storm Thorgerson, better known as one third […]

Posted in {art}, {books}, {burroughs}, {drugs}, {film}, {painting}, {psychedelia}, {science fiction}, {surrealism} | 1 comment »

 


Design as virus 16: Prisms

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The Dark Side Of The Moon (1973) by Pink Floyd. Design by Hipgnosis. Dark Side of the Moon is one of seven or eight suggestions we submitted to Pink Floyd. It relates to the Floyd’s concerts and their use of light shows. Specifically it was sparked off by Rick Wright who wanted something very simple, […]

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Labels

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A post for Record Store Day, and a slight return to the work of Hipgnosis and the late Storm Thorgerson. One of the many things which impressed about Hipgnosis album designs was the way they gradually came to approach each album as a distinct package for which every component deserved special attention. The very early […]

Posted in {design}, {music} | 1 comment »

 


Storm Thorgerson, 1944–2013

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Wish You Were Here (outer and inner sleeve, 1975) by Pink Floyd. Whenever people ask questions about your work at some point the subject of influences always turns up. Influences for me are usually few, they’re those things which skew your perception to such a degree—or which enlarge the range of possibilities—that they make you […]

Posted in {books}, {design}, {music} | 5 comments »

 


Weekend links 142

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Gratifying this week to see album cover art under discussion even if the heat-to-light ratio was as unbalanced as it usually is when pop culture is the subject. Jonathan Barnbrook, who also designed the Heathen (2002) and Reality (2003) packaging for David Bowie, wrote about the thinking behind the new cover on his blog. (And […]

Posted in {architecture}, {art}, {books}, {design}, {electronica}, {film}, {music}, {painting}, {photography}, {sculpture}, {television}, {typography} | 6 comments »

 


Hipgnosis turkeys

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Here in Britain there’s no Thanksgiving so turkey as a seasonal meal is a Christmas dish. Turkey also has another meaning which the OED can supply: 6.6 U.S. slang. a.6.a An inferior or unsuccessful cinematographic or theatrical production, a flop; hence, anything disappointing or of little value. This post concerns the latter—turkeys for the turkey […]

Posted in {design}, {music}, {photography} | 4 comments »

 


Hill figures

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Last year I was searching out various works of American land art via Google Maps. This is a similar post looking for some of Britain’s hillside figures, all of which are far older than any 20th-century artworks even if some of them aren’t as old as people hope. The antiquity of the Uffington White Horse […]

Posted in {art}, {design}, {music}, {photography} | 4 comments »

 


Carel Struycken’s panoramas

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The Bradbury Building by Carel Struycken. An idle search for a panorama view of the interior of the Bradbury Building in Downtown Los Angeles fetched me up at my favourite panorama site 360Cities and this photo by Carel Struycken. Mr Struycken is better known as an actor whose great height has seen him cast as […]

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Weekend links 48

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Nite Flights (1978) by The Walker Brothers. Cover design by Hipgnosis. something attacked the earth last nite with a kick that man habit-eye cut the sleep tight boys who dreamed and dreamed of a city like the sky Scott Walker quotes Brion Gysin (and who knows what else) in Shutout (see below), one of the […]

Posted in {architecture}, {art}, {books}, {burroughs}, {illustrators}, {music}, {photography} | 10 comments »

 


Peter Christopherson, 1955–2010

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Coil, circa 1984. John Balance (left) & Peter Christopherson (right). Photo by Lawrence Watson. The depths of the night sky Reflects in his eye He says “Everything changes And everyone dies.” Coil, Blood From The Air (1986) Yes, everyone dies but you don’t always expect it this soon, six years after the sudden loss of […]

Posted in {design}, {electronica}, {gay}, {music} | 8 comments »

 


 



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