When we heard about this exhibition, we knew we had to go and see it. Music + art, what more could we want? Held at the Front Room (a retail, performance and gallery space at St Martins Lane Hotel), Best Art Vinyl is an annual event, which celebrates the best of vinyl sleeve design by promoting the unsung heroes behind some of the most iconic covers. Last year, over 12,000 people around the world took part in the vote for best art work and Bright Eyes’ The People’s Key was crowned winner.
As soon as we entered, we were welcomed by an intimate atmosphere and smiling waiters. The place was filled with music industry-types, but we soon settled in as we began checking out the artwork. And this was the exhibition’s selling point – it’s not often that we visit a show exhibiting vinyl art, and the fact that we could vote for our favourite vinyl cover of 2012, was even more exciting. While browsing, we learnt a thing or two about the releases this year. For example, we had no idea the Beach Boys had produced a new record, how could we miss that? Or that Damien Hirst had designed the artwork (a skull covered with an explosion of colour) for The Hours’ record, See the Light. We saw some old favourites such as Klaxons’ Surfing the Void, with the now infamous cat in a spacesuit image, Bloc Party’s Intimacy (who could forget that kiss?) and Vampire Weekend’s eponymous debut album cover. It’s a well put-together exhibition with the vinyl displayed in chronological order. The only thing that bothered us as we wandered around the space, was who the hell were we going to vote for?
You can vote by visiting the exhibition in Front Room or [click here]
Best Art Vinyl is on at the Front room at St Martins Lane Hotel until 13 January 2013.
Words by Jenny Tzakova.