Vaughan Oliver has continued his long-standing relationship with the Pixies, designing the artwork for the band’s new album Head Carrier, released 30 September and on display at the Northern Design Festival in October.
The graphic designer collaborated with artist Ian Pollock, who he worked with on the band’s previous album Indie Cindy, and his intern Joshua Price, who created and photographed wooden lettering for the front cover. Art directed by Vaughan, the front and back covers are characteristically abstract, textural and somewhat sinister.
“Ian was able to bring characters in the songs to terrible life,” says Vaughan. “Charles (Pixies’ frontman Black Francis) gave me a bag full of lyrics and briefed Ian and myself with plenty of space to interpret. Charles likes the fact that his work goes through my filter and also Ian’s.”
Vaughan became known in the 80s for his work with British indie label 4AD, which originally signed the Pixies. Since then he has designed artwork for all of the band’s studio albums and other releases. “Working with the Pixies over the last 30 years has always been full of natural inspiration for me as art director and designer. Their lyrics are packed with strange and wonderful imagery and their music delivers all on a visceral salver.”
The artwork will be on display at the Northern Design Festival, Newcastle from 7–16 October.