Edition 2015

Total Records

The Great Adventure of Album Cover Photography

A history of photography through the prism of the vinyl record: both media, which left their mark on the 20th century, were combined in all their forms, from artwork to illustration, figuration to experimentation. The show is based on this diversity of intentions and propositions. Many photographers have left their mark on these 30x30-centimeter covers. Looking at an album cover, you can almost hear what you see. Photographers illustrated many classics. Who hasn’t purchased a record based on its cover? The image of Abbey Road has come down through the past half-century just as surely as the Beatles’ music. Some photographers built a style; others built icons. Labels built visual identities where photography mattered more than anything else. Every technique—from photojournalism to photomontage, photo booths, photos used for a purpose other than that for which they were intended, overexposed photos and photos within the photo—can be found in these 30x30-centimeter squares. The deeper you dig, the vaster the subject seems.
Jacques Denis

Exhibition curators: Antoine de Beaupré, Serge Vincendet, and Sam Stourdzé.

With the complicity of Jacques Denis.

The section ‘Francis Wolff and Blue Note Records’ is produced by the Kyotographie Festival, with Michael Cuscuna (Mosaic Records) and Lucille Reyboz & Yusuke Nakanishi (Kyotographie) as exhibition curators.

Paul McCartney album covers photographed by Linda McCartney.

Curated by Paul and Mary McCartney and produced by Linda Enterprises Ltd, London.

Printing by Sean Mulcahy at Metro Imaging, London. 

Publication: Total records, la grande aventure des pochettes de disques photographiques, éditions 213, 2015.

Exhibition venue: Atelier des Forges, Parc des Ateliers.

  • Institutional partners

    • République Française
    • Région Provence Alpes Côté d'Azur
    • Département des Bouches du Rhône
    • Arles
    • Le Centre des monuments nationaux est heureux de soutenir les Rencontres de la Photographie d’Arles en accueillant des expositions dans l’abbaye de Montmajour
  • Main partners

    • Fondation LUMA
    • BMW
    • SNCF
    • Kering
  • Media partners

    • Arte
    • Lci
    • Konbini
    • Le Point
    • Madame Figaro
    • France Culture