Warhol Record Covers

The banana on the album Velvet Underground & Nico (1967) is considered an icon of pop art. However, the range of album covers bearing Andy Warhol's signature is far more extensive. Thanks to the generous donation of Cologne gallery owner Klaus Benden, we have an almost complete collection of all Warhol covers in our collection. Arranged in chronological order, they show Warhol's artistic development, as he repeatedly explored the medium of the record in his creative work throughout the entire period of his career.
In his early New York years as a commercial artist, Warhol was tireless in his search for new commissions. His first collaboration with a major record company occurred during this phase: he produced two commissioned works for Columbia Records in 1949. Further contracts from the record industry followed in the 1950s, mainly for jazz LPs. In addition to information, buyers of this genre expected a unique aesthetic; the cover should convey a feeling for the music. With the development from commercial artist to established artist, Warhol also took on overall concepts for covers from the 1960s onwards. Musicians and record companies profited from his name, and he in turn benefited from the wide reach of the music industry.

In 1967, Andy Warhol produced the Velvet Underground & Nico album and also designed the famous banana cover for it. If you peel off the sticker with the yellow skin, pink flesh is revealed. The striking signature "Andy Warhol" underneath is both an advertisement and an incentive to buy. The cover of the Rolling Stones record "Sticky Fingers" (1971) is as legendary as it is scandalous. The zipper of the jeans can be opened to reveal a pair of white underpants. Like many other musicians, Warhol was friends with Mick Jagger and also designed the covers for "Love You Live" (1977) and "Emotional Tattoo" (1983). From the mid-1970s, his silkscreen portraits were used as cover images, for example on albums by Diana Ross or John Lennon. The sketch on the last Warhol cover "MTV High Priority" (1987) remained unfinished.

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