Carl Cox selects his ‘absolute super star’ records for art collaboration with UK photographic artist Mark Vessey

Carl Cox is one of the most in-demand DJs in the world, multi-award winning, with countless club dates and festival appearances every year. One of the most charming DJs in the business. A British musical ambassador and a veteran of acid house, a champion of techno, a dance music pioneer, label owner, King of Ibiza – you name it, Carl’s been there and done it, never losing sight of his passions – playing music, breaking tunes and celebrating life with a career that spans over
four decades.

He now distils his life’s work in a limited edition artwork entitled ‘Carl’ in collaboration with British photographic artist Mark Vessey to be launched at Enter Gallery (Brighton) on July 20th.

This new artwork is an extremely personal window into the history of the legendary Carl Cox and dance music as a genre in which he continues to play such a pivotal role. Through his personal vinyl collection which exceeds 150,000 pieces, he has chosen some of the records that are most important to him. Many of these were played by Carl from his beginnings as a mobile DJ and then onto the rave scene where he became known as the ‘Three Deck Wizard’ and still find their way into his headline festival and stand-alone show sets.

Showcasing his well-thumbed, worn and regularly played vinyl, 12-inch singles and long players, during lockdown he turned these tracks into ‘musical medicine’, helping bring people together and reaching out across inaccessible borders. Through the pandemic, Carl broadcast 52 episodes of his ‘Cabin Fever – The Vinyl Sessions show where he went through his personal collection and showcased different genres, the very special tracks he wanted the world to hear and his iconic tribute show to his late father where he played his father’s actual records that inspired a young Carl to become a DJ.

This artwork includes some of those tracks featuring releases by varied artists including Run DMC, Carrie Lucas, Fleetwood Mac, Duran Duran, Lil Louis Doug Lazy and many many more.

Carl has a unique story as a DJ, from growing up in the 60s and being heavily influenced by his Barbadian father’s modest record collection, he eventually took ownership of it and further established a collection of his own. Built upon the pillar of his father’s musical legacy incorporating Rhythm & Blues, Country & Western, Reggae, Soca and Jazz. Shaping his musical universe and allowing him to understand music at a tender age which he now considers his superpower.

Every single one of these records are not promos, I literally went to the record store and stood there and went through the music… this collection is the best of the best”. Carl Cox

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The passion and spirit of this collection have been captured visually by artist Mark Vessey, a rising star, known for exploring and celebrating icons of contemporary pop culture, he lovingly curates, the subjects of his images which include magazines, books and vinyl records that have had special significance within the popular cultural heritage of the 20th and 21st Centuries. This new print and photograph follows on from his critically acclaimed work with Norman Cook aka Fatboy Slim and Founder of Defected Records Simon Dunmore continuing his DJ and vinyl music theme.

“It has been an honour to work with Carl Cox, to have his trust and time to explore his archive. Carl Cox is unique in sewing together multiple generations through his passion for music. That passion and love has been shared and absorbed by him through his vinyl collection, each one of his vinyls holds its own piece of his story. My hope in photographing them together is that they visually reflect his love and shared history back to us.” Mark Vessey

Mark Vessey has previously created photographic works that showcase collections of dance music subgenres including House Music, and Funk ‘n’ Soul as well as collections inspired by Bowie and Kate Moss. He has also documented past covers of physical print magazines that we adore including Dazed & Confused, Mixmag, I-D and NME, covering music culture in an impactful and unique way, evoking the nostalgic emotions we have for different mediums. He has established himself on the artistic stage as an incisive celebrant and masterful documenter of popular culture.

‘Carl’ is a photographic print from a limited edition of 50 and comes with a certificate of authenticity signed by both Mark Vessey and Carl Cox.

Carl’s Editions will be available in the following sizes:

80cm x 80cm, 95cm x 95cm, 110cm x 110 cm C-type Photograph

The original mother piece a 150cm x 150cm photograph will be displayed at the launch

Available to order via here

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