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Classic Album Covers : Blind Faith - Blind Faith

Blind Faith is the self titled album by the supergroup Blind Faith, which consisted of Eric Clapton, Ginger Baker, Steve Winwood and Ric Grech. It was released in August 1969

The cover art was created by photographer  Bob Seidemann, a friend and former flatmate of Clapton’s. He explains his thinking behind the image thus:

“It was 1969 and man was landing on the moon. I could not get my hands on the image until out of the mist a concept began to emerge. To symbolize the achievement of human creativity and its expression through technology a space ship was the material object. To carry this new spore into the universe, innocence would be the ideal bearer, a young girl, a girl as young as Shakespeare’s Juliet. The space ship would be the fruit of the tree of knowledge and the girl, the fruit of the tree of life. The space ship could be made by Mick Milligan, a jeweller at the Royal College of Art. The girl was another matter. If she were too old it would be cheesecake, too young and it would be nothing. The beginning of the transition from girl to woman, that is what I was after. That temporal point, that singular flare of radiant innocence. Where is that girl?”

Quite

Travelling on teh Tube, Seidemann spotted a girl getting into his carriage. he asked her if she’d like to pose for the cover of the album. She asked if she’d have to take off her clothes and when Seidemann said yes, professed to be too shy. the girl was 14 so Seidemann used her younger sister, Mariora Goschen, who was reported to be 11 years old, instead

According to Seidemann, “She was glorious sunshine. Botticelli’s angel, the picture of innocence, a face which in a brief time could launch a thousand space ships. …I called the image “Blind Faith” and Clapton made that the name of the band. When the cover was shown in the trades it hit the market like a runaway train, causing a storm of controversy. At one point the record company considered not releasing the cover at all. It was Eric Clapton who fought for it. It was Eric who elected to not print the name of the band on the cover”

It was credited as the first ever rock album to not display the bands name on the cover art

Seidemann rented an 8 x 10 plate camera and took two photographs, one of Meriora in a studio against a white background, and the other in Dorset. He placed one on top of the other, cutting and pasting them together to form the final image

When asked what she thought her fee should be, Mariora said she wanted a young horse. Instead she was paid £40. She says “The nudity didn’t bother me. I hardly noticed I ahd breasts. I was mad about animals and mush taken up with family and friends. But now, when people tell me they can remember waht they were doing when they first saw teh cover and the effect it had on them, I’m thrilled to bits. By the way, I’m still waiting for Eric Clapton to ring me about the horse”

Eric, please take note!

The release of the album provoked controversy, not just becaiuse of the pre-pubescent Mariora, but because she is holding in her hands a hood ornament from a 1956 Chevrolet, which some perceived as phallic

The American record company agreed and released this cover with a sensible picture of the band

blind_2.jpg

Mariora Goschen (MSc, BA, and BSc) now works a a massage therapist and shiatsu practitioner in London

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