MUSIC COVERT ART
Robert Venosa began his career as comercial artist and art director for CBS.
During this time, in 1971 he was asked to designed the album cover 'Abraxas' for SANTANA - which he did in collaboration with Mati Klarwein - as well as the SANTANA lettering, both, won numerous prestigious design awards.
And the Santana logo has become one of the most recognized logos worldwide.
He later started his own advertising agencies in his native New York City where he created a lasting visual impact with his lettering, logo and album cover design for BLUE NOTE RECORDS with artist such as Ornette Coleman and many more...
About Blue Note Records: "...The tunes are funk-drenched and almost entirely groove and ostinato-driven; Eastern sonorities and melodic motifs are widespread; electric instruments, especially guitars, are featured in most lineups; blackism is centrestage; many of the artists are experimenting with vocals, from swelling background choirs through spoken recitation; phasing and other advances in studio technology are being enthusiastically embraced; and ten minute-plus tracks are pretty much the norm. Extra-musically, but significantly, the Reid Miles-designed sleeves which defined the Lion era are replaced by vibrant, Afro-psychedelic cover art from Bob Venosa and the Havona agency (all the original album sleeves are reproduced in the accompanying booklet). It's a trip from start to finish."
In 1978 Carlos Santana commissioned Venosa to do the cover art for his first solo album, 'Silver Dreams, Golden Reality 'and, later, the logo design for 'Guts and Grace', Santana's own record company.
Carlos Santana, SILVER DREAMS & GOLDEN REALITY
Logo for Carlos Santana's record company 'Guts & Grace' label.
Carlos Santana & Robert Venosa during his exhibit at 'Amazonia Gallery ' in L.A. exhibit, 1991.
Being Colorado neighbors - Venosa in Boulder, and Kitaro 10 miles away in Gold Hill - the two met at Kitaro's annual birthday bash striking up a friendship and a working association which included Venosa doing the cover art for the Mandala CD.
Kirao, Venosa & Keiko in Cadaques, Spain, 2004
In the early 1990s, a group of young Miami-based musicians came for a visit in Robert Venosa's Boulder studio to solicit his art for their next album cover "Focus'. CYNIC is an American progressive metal band formed in Miami, Florida in 1987 which incorporates elements of progressive rock, alternative rock, and extreme metal.
From 1993 forward, Venosa's art has graced all of their albums and CDs.
In all, Venosa designed more than 50 album covers for a number of labels,
including CBS/Columbia, Blue Note, and Mercury, among others.
A few more are shown here.