The results were recently announced for the 2008 Art Vinyl prize for best record cover – here’s the BBC News link – and because I’m hip to the sound on the trip-hop streets, I thought I’d share two of the top three with you fine people.
The winner was the Fleet Foxes album, and in third place was Coldplay (both pictured here).
However, the reason I picked these two is because they don’t really strike me as particularly worthy of the prize – they are, after all, pre-existing pictures by Bruegel and Delacriox, with a few words added in white. I know there’s a debate to be had about the nature of art and creation and found objects and all that, but given that second place went to a wholly new image – and a pretty creepy one at that – on the recent Roots Manuva album (see it in glorious scare-icolour here), I think that it seems to be rewarding designer for cleverly choosing bits of old art as opposed to creating new images of their own.
Then again, looking at Art Vinyl’s own website, it seems to be more about the sale of frames in which to hang your vinyl albums on the wall as opposed to the sleeve art itself, so maybe I’ve just been duped into wasting braintime thinking about something which is little more than a thinly-veiled advertising ploy.
Then again, it appears that the news-gathering forces of the BBC were equally fooled, so I shan’t blame myself too much.
Besides, I never liked vinyl as a format very much when I was a youth in the 1980s, it was far from easy to play on my Walkman.