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Pure Beauty Vinyl (2018)

Vinyl LP and packaging, 12 x 12 inches
Image courtesy Third Man Records


Releasing Pure Beauty, 2018 with Third Man Records included the opportunity to press thousands of records in one of the premier vinyl plants in the world, Jack White’s Third Man facility in Cass Corridor, Detroit, Michigan. Following the January release of the album digitally, on February 23rd the physical vinyl was made available to purchase as both a standard and limited edition bundle. A standard copy shipped with a double-sided 180 gram black vinyl with Nike and adidas logos scratched into it, a lyrics and production credits booklet, an 8.5 x 11 inch modified 1971 letter that John Baldessari sent to museum director Charlotte Townsend regarding the making of his work I Will Not Make Any More Boring Art, and an 11 x 9 inch poster of the lyrics to the track "Climate Change", written in Swiss German. The record sleeve is a rendition of Shirt's I Will Not Make Any More Boring Rap, 2016 and the back cover features a modified Baldessari workEverything is Purged From This Painting But Art, 1966. The cover image depicts an unmodified Pure Beauty, 1968, released 50 years later to the date from when John debuted the acrylic paint on canvas. As it turns out, months before talks had begun with Third Man, Shirt had reached out cold to John Baldessari's studio requesting a meeting with the artist. The request was accepted and some days later in September of 2017, the rapper spent about an hour with the 95-year-old at his Venice Beach compound. The two mostly talked art, with Shirt explaining that he’d been recording an album at school in Switzerland based on John’s 1968 work “Pure Beauty.” A year later when designing the vinyl’s packaging, Shirt had the idea to reach back out and ask for permission to license the famous images of the work, to which Baldessari obliged.Limited-edition bundles shipped with a white Champion bengal tiger t-shirt that referenced the Shirt work Bengal Tiger, 2014 and the Baldessari work Frames and Ribbons,1988, as well as a matte silver USB that hung off the cover attached by a neon zip tie, loaded with a pdf of credits and lyrics, mp3's, and 1,000 Photos, 2018, a new work explained to be a collection of photos taken by Shirt between September 2015 and October 2017 when he moved to Europe and began making the album.


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