Record Cover Art by Cindy Sherman and Jeff Koons.

Cindy Sherman and Jeff Koons  are two contemporary artists working in totally different media. Cindy Sherman (born 19th January 1954) is a photographer who specialises in self portraits in which she disguises herself in costume and in various situations. She is considered a conceptual artist.


CINDY SHERMAN

I have thus far managed to find six record, video and cassette covers with cover art by Cindy Sherman.The earliest recording I have found that has one of her photographs on its cover was for the television production “Two Moon July” which featured the music of Laurie Anderson, David Byrne (with whom Cindy Sherman had a relationship from 1991 to 2005), Philip Glass and others. The programme was released on VHS in 1986 and on Laserdisk the following year with Cindy‘s photograph of the Empire State Building on the cover.

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The cover of the “Two Moon July” Laserdisk.

In 1988, one of her self portraits was used as the cover art for a cassette of visual artists talking. The cassette was released as Tellus Magazine #21 entitled “Tellus #21: Audio by Visual Artists“. Tellus was a bi-monthly cassette magazine that was founded in New York in 1983.

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Cindy Sherman’s self portrait on the cover of the cassette magazine Tellus from 1988.

Sherman was involved with the female band Babes in Toyland in the 1980s and even appeared in one of their videos. Her photographs appeared on the covers of two of the group’s records “Fontanelle” (1992) and “Painkillers” (1993).

The punk band Cloudburst released two singles. The first, released in France in 1999 was a purple vinyl, three-track 7″ EP entitled “Love-Lies-Bleeding” and had a Cindy Sherman painting as its cover art.

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Cloudburst’s 1999 single cover with Cindy Sherman painting.

The latest cover i have been able to find is a five-track, single sided, yellow vinyl 12″ EP called “No More Crazy Women” by tenor saxophonist Arthur Doyle. I’ll be returning to Arthur Doyle in my list of Jeff Koon‘s cover art.

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The cover of Arthur Doyle’s “No More Crazy Women” 12″ EP-

JEFF KOONS

There only seem to be three record or CD covers with Jeff Koons’ art. Or that is all I have hitherto been able to find.

Eli and Edye Broad have built up a magnificent collection of American postwar art which is housed at The Broad at 221 S. Grand Avenue, Los Angeles and is open to visitors. The Los Angeles County Museum of Art hosted an exhibition of 100 works from the Broad Collection from 7th October 2001 until 6th January 2002. The exhibition was called “Jasper Johns to Jeff Koons: Four Decades of Art from the Broad Collection“. In conjunction with the exhibition a CD was released called “John Cage to David Byrne: Four Decades of Contemporary Music“. The exhibition later transferred to The Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington DC (16th March-3rd June 2002).

The CD was a compilation of 13 tracks by artists from David Bowie (“Rock ‘n’ Roll Suicide“) to John Cage (“Atlas Eclipticalis”) via The Velvet Underground (“Femme Fatale”), Dizzy Gillespie (“Be Bop”) and Klaus Schulze (“Floating”).

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The “John Cage to David Byrne: Four Decades of Contemporary Music” CD cover with a detail of Jasper Johns’ “Flag” and Jeff Koons’ “Rabbit”.

The CD booklet also contains pictures of other artworks from the Broad Collection, including Andy Warhol‘s “Elvis” (1963), Jean-Michel Basquiat‘s “Horn Players” (1983), Sharon Lockhart‘s “Untitled” (1996) and Stephan Balkenhol‘s “Large Woman with Green Pants” (1996). The rear inlay shows Roy Lichtenstein‘s “I… I’m Sorry” (1965-1966).

The second release with Jeff Koons‘ art is another Arthur Doyle record. This time another single-sided, two track 12″ single with cover that shows Koons‘ print “Donkey 1999” from 1999 produced in an edition of 99 copies. The cover, once again, has two corners cut off.

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Arthur Doyle Trio’s “Live at the Alterknit” cover.

And the third Jeff Koons cover is the best known. Lady Gaga‘s “ArtPop” from 2013. For this cover Koons acted as photographer.

I will keep looking out for more covers with art by Sherman and Koons and will probably update this post sometime in the future.

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More Fakes – or Should I Call Them “Reproductions”?

Last month I saw an exhibition at the Tel Aviv Museum of Art entitled “Fakes“. The centrepiece of the show was a collection of paintings by the Dutch forger Henricus Antonius Han Van Meergeren, who in the 1940’s painted several “Vermeer” paintings that fooled the experts and even Herman Göring bought one. Van Meegeren was uncovered and tried and to prove he had painted the forgeries, he produced another. His paintings are, however, so good that they are collectors’ items in their own right. The exhibition chose to illustrate the diffuse boundary between a copy, a reproduction and a forgery. There was even a listening station where one could listen and compare George Harrison‘s “My Sweet Lord” with The Chiffon‘s “He’s So Fine“, which Harrison was judged to have plagiarised.

Now I’m not going to suggest I’m in van Meegeren‘s league, but I do like a bit of reproduction… They had to give up trying to make a catalogue of Andy Warhol‘s prints as there were so many reproductions and fakes that judging which should be included and which should not proved impossible. There are many artists who have been “inspired” by Warhol’s art, ranging from Steve Kaufmann, who had worked with Warhol at The Factory to Elaine Sturtevant, who painted Warhol images from memory. As a collector of Warhol‘s record cover art, I realised that there were some rare covers that I was never going to be able to afford (Moondog‘s “The Story of Moondog“, John Wallowitch‘s “The Other Side of John Wallowitch” and a couple of rare bootleg albums). So, if I wanted them in my collection–and the solution seemed easy–just make reproductions!

I started in 2013 when I decided to produce a set of covers of Warhol‘s 1963 “Giant Size $1.57 Each“. The nearest I had come to a real one was when, in 2008,  I tipped Guy Minnebach off about one being auctioned in Japan. His has been exhibited in several exhibitions. Warhol had spraypainted record covers in four colours; red, green, orange and yellow and then silkscreened the “Giant Size $1,57 Each” on top. He also silkscreened onto plain white covers. So I bought a batch of record covers and the cans of spraypaint, and set to work. I prepared 50 covers and took a course in silkscreening to finish the job.

There were several other covers I couldn’t afford, including the Lew WhiteMelodic Magic” and “Waltzes by Johann Strauss, Jr.” So I bought card of about the correct thickness, photocopied the cover art and the rear cover texts and glued them all together. Later I realised that I could get a more accurate reproduction if I took an RCA Camden EP sleeve (luckily all Camden EPs have generic back covers, so I could take just about any Camden EP cover for these projects), removed the front cover image with sticky tape and stuck the photocopied slick over where the original picture had been. Then I had a bit of luck when I bought a copy of the Lew WhiteMelodic Magic” EP (without a cover) for $3.86 to complete the set. I’m still  looking for a copy of the Strauss Waltzes disc.

The third rarity that I wanted to make was the incredibly rare (perhaps only one copy exists) “Night Beat” box. There was a picture of in Paul Maréchal‘s book so I set to work. I bought several RCA Victor boxes of EPs and made up a cover slick in Photoshop. I was well pleased with what I thought was a perfect reproduction. However, when the original went on show at the “Warhol on Vinyl” exhibition at the Cranbrook Art Museum I found out that I had not made a true copy. The box’s spine should have the set’s title and the NBC logo rather than the dots I had used.

Back to the drawingboard! Step One: I needed more RCA boxes, and luckily I found a seller in America who had six for sale cheap. Step Two: I needed a photo of the spine of the genuine box to copy. Here fellow WCCC member Niklas Lindberg came to my rescue and mailed over a picture.
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Step Three: More photoshopping. Step Four: Off to my local printer. I told him the box’s front cover image had to be 19 cms in height. He duly produced prints with the image 19 cms high. But these were too large (mea culpa!), so he made a second run with 5% smaller images. These turned out to be just too small, so I had to ask him to print a third copy 3% larger than the second printing. Finally the size was dead on.

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The print on A3 paper as it came from the printer.

Step Five:  Cutting the prints to fit the box required some practice, which I eventually mastered.

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The cover print cut and folded ready for gluing.

Step Six: Gluing the slicks to the boxes. Thank heavens for spray glue!

I got home from the printer at 6.10 p.m. and had nine boxes completed by 9.30 p.m.!

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Completed “Night Beat” boxes.

During the day I also managed to make mock covers of Moondog‘s “The Story of Moondog” and John Wallowitch‘s “The Other Side of John Wallowitch” as well as a new version of Banksy‘s Capoeira Twins promo cover for “4 x 3“. And I made a cover of Peter Blake‘s “Vintage Blake” print from 2012.

All in all a very productive day!.