pressing matters

Curated by Pavement Licker, Helium London & MATCHESFASHION enlist great artists to recreate great album covers
Fashion | 8 April 2021
Text Finn Blythe

Taking place this May in London’s Mayfair comes a special exhibition-cum-auction organised by MATCHESFASHION in collaboration with Helium London. The three-week event is curated by London-based creative platform Pavement Licker and will feature an extensive roster of leading contemporary artists who will be creating unique works in response to rare test pressings and vinyl donated by the biggest names in the music industry.


With donations from the likes of Sonic Youth, Arctic Monkeys, Depeche Mode, Underworld, The Rolling Stones, Prodigy, Pet Shop Boys, The Horrors and Slowthai to name but a few, the event will see each musician partnered with a visual artist. These include Ralph Steadman, David Shrigley, Jeremy Deller, Gavin Turk, Larry Achiampong and Boy George among others, all of whom have created original pieces of art that take their cue from an album. Ralph Steadman for example has been partnered with The Who, while Gavin Turk has reinterpreted a classic Stones’ cover (an unenviable task), Shepard Fairy recreates The Clash’s seminal London Calling artwork and Jeremy Deller is taking on the work of James Blake.

These works, which range in style and medium, will be up for sale in an online auction that acts as the exhibition finale. Taking place between 24-29 May, all sales raised will be donated to Music Support, a grassroots charity offering help and guidance to members of the UK music industry who have been affected by poor mental ill-health or addiction problems. Coinciding with Mental Health Awareness Week (10-16 May), the event will also feature a series of panel discussions between industry members on the topic of mental health and overcoming the challenges brought by the last twelve months.

Speaking on the subject, founder and CEO of Helium London, Jennifer McCormick, expressed the importance of such events in strengthening existing communities and forging new ones. “Navigating a world in recovery can be a daunting, overwhelming experience with fear of being judged leading to many folks protecting their sobriety from common knowledge. Creating this exhibition has been the most wonderful convergence of my personal and work life in order to champion Music Support. It has brought together phenomenal talent without prejudice  and forged new creative relationships all united in breaking down barriers surrounding addiction and mental health.”

The exhibition will take place at 5 Carlos Place between 4–29 May, culminating in an online auction at between 24–29 May. 

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