A needle rapping on a 78 vinyl record is a rare sight these days, but College of the Canyons Art Gallery brought back this blast from the past Thursday when it opened its newest exhibition, Vinyl: The Art of the Album Cover.
The white walls of the art gallery are now covered in vinyl record albums from a variety of popular and lesser-known artists that range from the late 50s to contemporary. A wide variety of genres is represented from blue grass, jazz, pop, punk, rock ‘n’ roll, and holiday music.
Vinyl doesn’t just feature album covers, but also has colorful records and several types of turntables from different decades. Samples of records and nostalgic favorites softly play while guests enjoy the artwork. Visitors can even request a song to listen to.
Art Gallery director, Larry Hurst, curated 90 percent of the exhibition pieces from his personal vinyl collection, which consists of records he purchased and some handed down from his parents.
Other COC faculty members and music enthusiasts contributed some of their own pieces to the display in the exhibition.
“[The album covers] play a really important role. I think, a stronger role than CDs, which because of the smaller format, I don’t think people may much attention to the design,” Hurst said.
The gallery is meant to give students a look at past technology; art and design students can appreciate the progression and creativity in the album artwork through the generations, he added.
“I’ve never listened to vinyl, but it is cool seeing everything and how different each album looks—especially the colorful ones and The Beatles one because it is so iconic,” COC student Becky Aguirre said.
Those that grew up with vinyl records could be rushed with nostalgia and fond memories.
“This is a walk down memory lane for me,” said David Bromberg, a former COC student and Santa Clarita resident enthusiastic about concerts and music.
“We’d listen to that in the 70s, sit in our bedrooms with our record players, and a lot of these people I have seen in concert.”
Vinyl: The Art of the Album Cover is open Monday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. until December 13 at the College of the Canyons Art Gallery. Admission is free. More information is available at http://www.canyons.edu/offices/artgallery/.