Stanley Donwood e o newspaper album
Donwood é o Radiohead-visual: ele que cuida de todo o design da banda desde The Bends, sempre contando com dicas dos integrantes do grupo, principalmente Thom Yorke. E ao abrir uma exposição em Londres na mesma semana em que o Radiohead lança seu novo disco, ele quase que pediu para ser entrevistado sobre o disco – mais especificamente sobre o conceito de “álbum-jornal” -, que foi o que o Independent fez:
Though it is a “new” development for music, the newspaper format is not a new direction for Donwood – papers are a constant of his career. His fascination with the medium began when he worked as a paper boy and found direction later in producing jokey newspapers for festivals.
From 2006, he found a more focused role for the format, using it to promote and explain his work. For example, for a 2010 San Francisco show he produced a special issue of his newspaper, Over Normal.
“I love the tactile nature of the newsprint,” says Donwood. “I love the history of Fleet Street (which featured in The Eraser’s art), the revolution that was moving type and how it meant that, for the first time, people were able to educate and inform themselves in an accessible way.”
In his commitment to the format, of which the new Radiohead LP is the latest manifestation, Donwood is part of a growing movement of boutique news-printing – small-run, micro-focused newspaper publications. The popularity is such that The Newspaper Club prints news for anything from school papers and wedding souvenirs to corporate clients such as Liberty and Wired. Also printing are artists capitalising on the romance of newsprint, and the author Dave Eggers, who started his own bespoke San Francisco Panorama – a 320-page broadsheet featuring art and writing from the likes of Michael Chabon.
People harking back to newsprint in a digital age does not surprise Donwood. For him, papers are archives in a way websites cannot be. “A newspaper is a snapshot; a physical record of how things are. If you turned the electricity off, digital records would all disappear, but newspapers have the physical reality, the longevity, and that’s brilliant.”
Bem dito, Stan.