Posted:Mar 4, 2023

Album Covers with Masterpieces of Art

The Velvet Underground & Nico / Blur Think Tank / Sonic Youth Nurse / Jackie Gleason Presents Lonesome Echo

While streaming music has largely replaced music on physical media, the past few years have seen a strong resurgence of the vinyl record. One of vinyl’s best qualities is its large size and the expansive 12 square-inch jackets were missed when CDs became standard. The record jacket is the perfect canvas for musical artists to express themselves, not only aurally but visually. Most album cover art is a photo of the band or the creation of a contemporary graphic artist. However, many album covers feature famous works of art by world-renowned artists ranging from Jean-Michel Basquiat to William Turner. Vinyl records are not only a good way to listen to music, but also to enjoy masterpieces of art while you’re working on that 8-figure bank account. Here are some albums that have famous works of art on their covers.

Coldplay “Viva La Vida or Death and All His Friends”

Coldplay "Viva La Vida or Death and All His Friends"

The cover of the British rock band’s 2008 album features the Eugene Delacroix painting Liberty Leading the People. The work was created in 1830 to commemorate the July Revolution which ended the reign of King Charles X. It is considered one of the earliest depictions of the figure of Marianne, representing liberty and a symbol of the French Republic.

The Modern Jazz Quartet Plays “No Sun in Venice”

The Modern Jazz Quartet "No Sun in Venice"

British landscape master J. M. William Turner painted The Grand Canal, Venice during a visit to Venice in 1833, as part of a series of views of the city. The painting was first shown at the Royal Academy in 1835.

The Proctors “Everlasting Light”

The Proctors "Everlasting Light"

Marigolds by Austrian artist Koloman Moser is currently on display (until April 9, 2023) in the exhibition Egon Schiele from the Collection of the Leopold Museum - Young Genius in Vienna 1900 at the Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Art.

The Strokes “A New Abnormal”

The Strokes "New Abnormal"

Jean-Michel Basquiat’s 1981 work Birds on Money was created as a tribute to jazz musician Charlie ‘Bird’ Parker. The painting is in the collection of the Rubell Museum, one of the world’s largest contemporary art collections.

Weezer “Pinkerton”

Weezer "Pinkerton"

Weezer songwriter and lead singer Rivers Cuomo is a Japanophile and it shows in the album’s cover art, which features ukiyo-e master Hiroshige Utagawa’s Night Snow at Kambara from his 53 Stations of the Tokaido series.

Terrance Young

Translator / Editor

Terrance Young

Translator / Editor