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Barney Bubbles: The Man Who Designed The 70s

Legendary designer and former Factory Records co-director Peter Saville pays tribute to the artist whose work with Hawkwind, The Damned and Elvis Costello helped define the era.

Barney Bubbles was very important, and massively inspirational to me. I never met him, but I think of Barney just as a true, genuine, intuitive talent. He was the real deal.

I was at school with [fellow designer] Malcolm Garrett and Malcolm was really into Hawkwind – this was about 1970 or ’71. And through the covers of Hawkwind I was seeing the work of Barney Bubbles. The album cover was the principal means of visual stimulation for our generation. Unless you came from a very informed or privileged family background, contemporary art or even fashion were not things you would know much about. But album covers were a remarkably important gateway to information, for any kind of visual avant-garde.

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