Alex Steinweiss, Inventor of the Album Cover

design, inspirational people, music

Fresh off the heels of the Grammy’s, I thought I’d shed a little light on the history of the album cover. Credit has been given to Alex Steinweiss for inventing the album cover as we know it. He was the pioneer who took the cover from a plain brown wrapper to the custom artwork we know today. Read a little bio here.

Mr. Steinweiss passed away this year, but his legacy will certainly live on, as first art director at Columbia Records, and beyond. His work was a little of everything: a little modern, a little dada, a little bauhaus, a little abstract, always fresh and creative. His album covers have been lovingly imitated since his first cover came out in 1939. If you’ve never heard of Mr. Steinweiss, you’re missing out. AIGA’s tribute to him is here.

The image above is what is historically known as the very first album cover; image borrowed from LP Cover Lover’s website.

Last: article about Steinweiss’s career and passing in the NY Times this past summer.


One thought on “Alex Steinweiss, Inventor of the Album Cover

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s