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Design October, 17 2012

Designer Peter Saville on his Cover Design for Joy Division – Unknown Pleasures

The instantly recognisable cover design for Joy Division’s ‘Unknown Pleasures’ has become the stuff of legend. Its creator Peter Saville, quite the legend himself, speaks to Visualized on the design and its ongoing cult status – an idea which originally came from an old textbook (the Cambridge Encyclopedia of Astronomy) and what Saville describes as “a comparative path demonstration of the frequency a signal from a pulsar. And, in fact, it’s the first pulsar ever observed.” Its potential to be manipulated, reproduced and re-imagined has kept itfresh decades on, “It’s kind of a template which people continue to interpret in a deeply serious, melodramatic, or quite comic way.”

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