A while ago I went to Wetterling Gallery,one of Stockholm’s premier galleries, to view an exhibition and saw two paintings by twin artists Mike & Doug Starn. These paintings were abstract works painted on record covers which were hung with magnets onto a metal backing plate allowing each record cover to be removed and the record contained within played! Each individual record cover still had its original album inside.
On 11th June the Wetterling Gallery held an opening reception for a repeat show of Mike & Doug Starn’s art with the artists in attendance.
There were six large works and two smaller ones in the show–all painted on record covers.
Untitled: Right in the Bed Next to Mine (on 12 record covers)
Monitor: Feed Your Head (on 70 record covers).
Black & White: And it Feels Like This! (on 12 record covers).
Little Richard (on 30 record covers)
I’m Only Five Foot One (on 70 record covers–the eleventh row at the bottom had to be left off as otherwise the painting would not have fitted on the wall!)
TOP: Ravenna: NInety Miles and Hour, Girl (1 gatefold record cover). Bottom: Untitled: Come on, Come on, Come on, Come on and Take It (1 gatefold record cover).
Untitled: Burt the Rainbow Has a Beard (on 35 record covers).
According to my count there were a total of 201 record covers used for these eight artworks. I wondered if Mike and Doug raided all the secondhand record stores to source the covers. There seemed not to be any logic in the arrangement of the covers, not in the motifs painted on them, with the exception of the “Little Richard” painting. And as the exhibition was called “Iggy and Franz”, I assumed the painting with the androgyn figure, called “I’m Only Five Foot One”, pictured Iggy Pop.
These paintings were not cheap! Prices ranged from $10,000 + VAT for the two single cover works to $195,000 + VAT for the largest ones. Somewhat out of my price range.
2 thoughts on “The Art of Mike & Doug Starn–Another Way to Collect Record Cover Art.”
Awesome idea! Personally I like the abstract artworks better than the ones with portraits.
The sheer size of the largest works, with 70 records, was quite mindblowing! The price tags were also mindblowing!
Anyway, I liked the ’Little Richard’ painting best.
It’s a fascinating idea—I told both Mile & Doug that I collect record covers, but I wouldn’t like to paint on them…