Art Sheets to Wrap Around the Songs
Art Sheets to Wrap Around the Songs
  • Kim Park Yeonhoo
  • 승인 2024.06.03 09:59
  • 댓글 0
이 기사를 공유합니다


Many different album covers encapsulate the theme of the songs that the artist is trying to convey. In the age of streaming, we don't have to buy physical LPs or CDs to listen music, so there is a tendency to focus more on the songs than the album cover. However, if you go back to the 1960s when LPs dominated the music market, people used to focus on the album cover artistic style. This SMT reporter explored the timeless story of Hipgnosis, a design studio, which has been at the center of music and design history for decades, through the exhibition "Hipgnosis: The Long Playing Story."



The beginning of a worthy album cover

Founded by Aubrey Powell and Storm Sogerson, Hipgnosis was a British art and design group based in London that specialized in creating cover art for rock musicians and bands. The word Hipgnosis is a combination of 'hip,' meaning cool, and 'gnosis,' meaning knowledge. The story of Hipgnosis began when their friends Pink Floyd, a five-member British rock band, asked them to design the cover for their second album. From there, they rose to prominence in the London music scene, creating covers for many artists, including some of the most popular bands of the day. Their album covers became more than just covers; they became symbols of the artists themselves and works of art that expressed the public's emotions and tastes.
The exhibition is located at Ground Seesaw Seochon in Jongno-gu. To get there from Sookmyung Women's University, take the 7016 or 1711 bus from the Sookmyung University Entrance Area stop. Get off at Gyeongbokgung Station and walk for about two minutes until you see Ground Seesaw Seochon. For taking the subway, head to Namyeong Station and take Line 1 to Jongno 3-ga Station. At Jongno 3-ga Station, transfer to Line 3, get off at Gyeongbokgung Station, and walk the same two minutes to reach Ground Seesaw Seochon. If you're traveling by car, you'll need to use a nearby public car park as there are no parking spaces at the exhibition location. The exhibition has four floors, and visitors can purchase tickets on the ground floor for 15,000 won per person. Tickets can be purchased directly at the venue, but cash is not accepted. They can also be purchased online through Naver Booking, Interpark, and 29CM, and discounts are available for online purchases.


Hipgnosis at the crossroads of music and design

The exhibition is organized into three main themes: Welcome to Hipgnosis Studio, Records of Hipgnosis, and Hipgnosis Anthology, which are spread across the three floors of the museum. On the second floor, the Welcome to Hipgnosis section is an introduction to the Hipgnosis Studio, the heart of the London music scene in the 1960s. Upon entering this section, visitors are greeted with a three-minute film that introduces them to Hipgnosis. Moving on to the video section, the formation of Hipgnosis and the album cover process is represented through photographs. Visitors can also follow the story of the studio's founder, Aubrey Powell, as he talks about how they shot everything on film and did everything by hand in the pre-Photoshop days, which impressed this SMT reporter. The fact that it took them an average of three to six weeks to accomplish something that nowadays would only take half a day really highlights the value of analog. The second theme of the exhibition, Records of Hipgnosis, emphasizes the unique working process that Hipgnosis developed. It presents each of the musicians who collaborated with Hipgnosis and their album cover artwork, telling the story behind each of them. There are five tracks in total, offering behind-the-scenes access to artists such as Paul McCartney And Wings, Led Zeppelin, 10cc, Pink Floyd, Peter Gabriel and Genesis. On the third floor, visitors can enjoy album covers with the artists' songs, and it is eye-opening as the album cover artwork is structured to match each artist. This SMT reporter was particularly impressed with the area which is set up in the spirit of Pink Floyd's "The Dark Side of the Moon" album, with enormous images on the floor and mirrors on the ceiling. On the fourth floor is the Hipgnosis Anthology section with Peter Gabriel and Genesis tracks. This section is a special zone that brings together 15 years of Aubrey Powell's Hipgnosis retrospective. It also features a collection of unpublished works that have never been seen before. In this exhibition, visitors can appreciate the work even deeper through its stories of Hipgnosis.


Ratings: ★★★★☆

The exhibition takes visitors through the history of Hipgnosis as if they were in the studio. This SMT reporter lost track of time amidst the hip vinyl albums, which don't look dated at all now, along with interesting stories about them. The exhibition is well structured, so visitors can feel the artistry of the album covers, and it was fun to listen to the music as the hits from the albums Hipgnosis worked on were played throughout. It is recommended for those who love vinyl records and pop culture of the past.

삭제한 댓글은 다시 복구할 수 없습니다.
그래도 삭제하시겠습니까?
댓글 0
계정을 선택하시면 로그인·계정인증을 통해
댓글을 남기실 수 있습니다.