Friday, February 16, 2007

Cale. Mckean. Cat. Bag.

Dave McKean has just done the cover for the new John Cale boxed set. I feel vaguely paternal about this, because many years ago I got a phone call from John Cale, rather out of the blue, asking if I could suggest an artist for his autobiography, and after he listed all the things he wanted the artist to do, I said "You need Dave McKean" and gave him Dave's phone number. (I told him that if Dave couldn't do it, I'd figure out four or five different artists to do what he wanted done.) But Dave did it, and then John did the narration for Dave's film Neon, and now Dave's done the cover for the Cale boxed set -- a cover that contains references visually to John's entire magnificent career. (I am big John Cale fan, I should add, and Fragments of a Rainy Season would be one of my Desert Island CDs.)

In addition to painting the cover, Dave's also recorded a sort of artist's commentary on the painting and on John. If you head over to and you click on the painting (or just nip over to you will learn much about art, and Mr Cale, and Dave, and be amused besides because he's very funny. (And it's worth it, frankly, just to hear Dave McKean saying "Shiny, shiny, shiny boots of leather...")

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