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Art Record Covers. 40th Ed.

Hardcover, 6.1 x 8.5 in., 3.23 lb, 512 pages
US$ 25
Multilingual Edition:
English, French, German
Availability: September 2021
Art history acquires a new rhythm in this unique anthology of artists’ record covers from the 1950s to today. More than 450 covers trace the thrilling interaction between music and visual art and the ways in which modernism, Pop Art, and conceptual practice have all informed the way we see the sounds we hear. Featured covers include Salvador Dalí’s skewered butterfly for Jackie Gleason and Banksy’s stenciled graffiti for Blur.

Sound Art

An unprecedented collection of artists’ record covers from the 1950s to today
Since the dawn of modernism, visual and music production have had a particularly intimate relationship. From Luigi Russolo’s 1913 Futurist manifesto L’Arte dei Rumori (The Art of Noise) to Marcel Duchamp’s 1925 double-sided discs Rotoreliefs, the 20th century saw ever more fertile exchange between sounds and shapes, marks and melodies, and different fields of composition and performance.

In Francesco Spampinato’s unique anthology of artists’ record covers, we discover the rhythm of this particular cultural history. The book presents 450 covers and records by visual artists from the 1950s through to today, exploring how modernism, Pop Art, Conceptual Art, postmodernism, and various forms of contemporary art practice have all informed this collateral field of visual production and supported the mass distribution of music with defining imagery that swiftly and suggestively evokes an aural encounter.

Along the way, we find Jean-Michel Basquiat’s urban hieroglyphs for his own Tartown record label, Banksy’s stenciled graffiti for Blur, and a skewered Salvador Dalí butterfly on Jackie Gleason’s Lonesome Echo. There are insightful analyses and fact sheets alongside the covers listing the artist, performer, album name, label, year of release, and information on the original artwork. Interviews with Tauba Auerbach, Shepard Fairey, Kim Gordon, Christian Marclay, Albert Oehlen, and Raymond Pettibon add personal accounts on the collaborative relationship between artists and musicians.
The author

Francesco Spampinato is a writer and historian of contemporary art and visual culture currently doing his PhD at the Sorbonne Nouvelle in Paris. He lectures on art, design, and media and was also Adjunct Professor of Contemporary Art History and Theory, and Performance Art at Rhode Island School of Design in Providence, U.S., from 2011 to 2015. In 2015 he authored Come Together: The Rise of Cooperative Art and Design (Princeton Architectural Press) and Can You Hear Me? Music Labels by Visual Artists (Onomatopee).

The editor

Julius Wiedemann studied graphic design and marketing and was an art editor for newspapers and design magazines in Tokyo before joining TASCHEN in 2001. His titles include the Illustration Now! and Record Covers series, as well as the infographics collection and books about advertising and visual culture.

Art Record Covers. 40th Ed.
Hardcover, 6.1 x 8.5 in., 3.23 lb, 512 pages
ISBN 978-3-8365-8816-4
Multilingual Edition: English, French, German
TASCHEN is 40! Since we started our work as cultural archaeologists in 1980, TASCHEN has become synonymous with accessible publishing, helping bookworms around the world curate their own library of art, anthropology, and aphrodisia at an unbeatable price. Today we celebrate 40 years of incredible books by staying true to our company credo. The 40 series presents new editions of some of the stars of our program—now more compact, friendly in price, and still realized with the same commitment to impeccable production.
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