Graham Moore delivers a dose of DIY ingenuity in Saturday High classes and album cover art mosaics

by April 30th, 2014

Saturday High and Art Center at Night instructor Graham Moore in his studio. Photo: Gregory Firlotte

Saturday High and Art Center at Night instructor Graham Moore. Photo: Gregory Firlotte

If you’ve been to the vinyl section of Amoeba Music in Hollywood lately, you’ve no doubt noticed a window display featuring cut up and reconfigured album covers by artists like The B-52s, Martin Denny and David Bowie.

That display was created by Saturday High and Art Center at Night instructor Graham Moore, a U.K.-born artist and graphic designer who studied at Wimbledon School of Art and East Ham College of Technology and came to the City of Angels via London. 

In addition to Amoeba Music, his other clients have included The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, Mazda and JCPenney. His work has been shown at several venues, including Modern Way in Palm Springs, Barnsdall Art Center in Hollywood, and La Luz de Jesus Gallery in Los Feliz, which included three of his latest works in its annual group show, Laluzapalooza.

Moore’s Inner Circle, featured on the cover of the latest Saturday High catalog, is a prime example of his ongoing “Redux” series, 12”x12” works in which he cuts up vintage album covers (mostly from the ‘60s) and reconfigures them into vibrant, often abstract arrangements.

Inner Circle (2012) by Graham Moore.

Inner Circle (2012) by Graham Moore.

“Redux” literally means “new interpretation,” a term Moore says perfectly describes his technique, which continues to evolve: “I started with albums but I’ve also branched into using book covers and PVC billboards.”

All the classes Moore teaches are intentionally analog experiences. His DIY course for Art Center at Night explores the craft and language of visual communication and takes its inspiration from trailblazing British graphic designers who created album covers from the late ’70s to the early ’80s. And the one-week summer workshops he teaches at Saturday High, Art as Design and Creative Type, both follow a similar philosophy by emphasizing traditional techniques and eschewing digital technology for the actual creation of the work. 

Moore believes computers are great tools but says the “happy accidents” that arise from working with whatever physical materials are on hand are invaluable. “With a computer, if you make a mistake you just hit ‘Command-Z,’” says Moore, pointing out the control the creator has when working digitally. “But you don’t always want that control. Sometimes you just want to have fun and experiment and see what happens.”

And Moore provides his students with plenty of materials and textures for tactile experimentation. “I bring in huge tubs full of shredded magazines,” says Moore with a laugh. “I have boxes full of every color and texture imaginable. You should see my home.”

In addition to Art Center at Night and Saturday High, Moore also teaches at Woodbury University and Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising.

PERFORTI by Graham Moore.

PERFORTI (2011) by Graham Moore.

Designed for teens in grades 9 through 12, Art Center’s Saturday High offers a variety of courses in art and design—from Advertising and 3D Character Modeling for Gaming to Fashion Sketching and Introduction to Transportation Design—for all experience levels and in a variety of areas.

Art Center at Night, the continuing studies program at the College, offers nearly 200 innovative courses in design and the visual arts, and is designed for busy adults, with courses held during the day, in the evenings and on weekends.

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