As far as iconic album covers go, The Clash's London Calling is way up there. Capturing the pent-up frustration of Paul Simonon as he knocks 10 barrels out of his bass during a gig at New York's Palladium in 1979, the out-of-focus photograph, by Pennie Smith, was chosen (much to her dismay) for the band's third album. To complete the classic album sleeve, the typography used was not so much in homage to Elvis's first album cover, but to the unknown graphic pioneer who created it for him.
Alongside a retrospective of works by its creator Ray Lowry, the band's official war artist and general all-round rock 'n' roll cartoonist, 30 prominent creatives have re-interpreted this unmistakable piece of punk history and, in turn, celebrated and explored how Ray and his ideologies have influenced them and their artistic output. Some of the artists invited to take part include Tracey Emin, Nick Hornby, Billy Childish, Harry Hill, Paul Simonon and Humphrey Ocean. There are some great stories behind several of the arts being donated - including Phil Jupitus's, who spent his first pay packet on Lowry’s cartoons.
All of the new works will be exhibited for the first time at Idea Generation Gallery and, after a world tour, will be auctioned with all proceeds going to The Ray Lowry Foundation, which supports further education in the arts for those from less privileged backgrounds.
Ray Lowry: London Calling 18th June - 4th July. Idea Generation