Acclaimed Pixies Graphic Designer Vaughan Oliver Passes Away

30 December 2019 | 12:27 pm | Staff Writer

"We were blessed to know you and will forever be thankful for all you did.”

Influential UK graphic designer Vaughan Oliver, who was responsible for some of the most iconic album designs ever, has passed away aged 62.

The news was confirmed by graphic designer and former colleague Adrian Shaughnessy, although no cause of death has been revealed.

In the early ‘80s, Oliver began working for record label 4AD, where he designed cover art for Pixies seminal records Surfer Rosa and Doolittle and more.

“We are incredibly sad to learn of the passing of Vaughan Oliver; there was no-one else like him,” 4AD said.

“Without Vaughan, 4AD would not be 4AD and it’s no understatement to say that his style also helped to shape graphic design in the late-20th century.

“The label’s first employee, he designed his first sleeve for the Modern English single Gathering Dust in 1980 before going on to create iconic works for the likes of Pixies, Breeders, Cocteau Twins, This Mortal Coil, Throwing Muses, Lush, Pale Saints, TV On The Radio, Scott Walker and countless others.

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The Guardian said his designs were ‘abstract, dreamlike, elegant’ and they weren’t wrong, he gave both us as a label and our musicians an identity and a voice.

“We will miss you Vaughan and our thoughts are with your family and friends. We were blessed to know you and will forever be thankful for all you did.”

More recently, Oliver worked on Pixies’ last three LPs, including this year’s Beneath The Eyrie.