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Rihanna’s Unapologetic Artwork

superstar turns to super-hip designer for latest...

Rihanna’s Unapologetic Artwork

There’s still something about this girl that makes it difficult for even the most hardened of hipster to wash their hands of her – and, roping in the supremely talented Mario Hugo to adorn her latest album cover with custom type, photographic treatments and illustrations is a prime example of that...

Illustration by Mario Hugo for Gravité Creative.
Photograph by Michael Muller

Unquestionably the biggest pop star on the planet, Rihanna’s seventh long player is irksomely titled Unapologetic – the 21st century rebel without a cause? A gung-ho defier of convention on a miltant mission to subvert popular culture from the inside, unashamed and unrepentant in her quest? Give me a break. Lighting up a fag and expressing a lack of regret in the title of your latest collection of big-name producer written pop songs is hardly treading new ground.

In fact, the young Barbadian has much to apologise for: singing the praises of mind-numbing thug Chris Brown surely the most unsettling of them. Seven albums in eight years? Not cool (just ask The Stone Roses). Tattoos that make you look a bit like Guy Pearce’s forgetful character in Memento? Not cool. However, there’s still something about this girl that makes it difficult for even the most hardened of hipster to wash their hands of her – and, roping in the supremely talented Mario Hugo to adorn her latest album cover with custom type, photographic treatments and illustrations is a prime example of that.

Forget the sad and unrelenting use of a cigarette as a visual device by which to relay the message “I AM NOT A CUTE LITTLE POP STAR, I AM A LITTLE BIT ROCK AND ROLL, CAN’T YOU SEE?” – the New York-based designer has fashioned a powerful aesthetic for the multi-million-selling pop star, the sort that’d look more at home wrapped around the latest dronewave 12″. Photography comes courtesy of Michael Muller and Melissa Forde, whilst Rih Rih herself (along with her creative director Ciarra Pardo) are cited as creative directors. Magnus Voll Mathiassen (MVM)‘s famous Rihanna illustration gets a remix by Hugo for the CD itself.

Commercial? Definitely. But, like Rihanna says, we’re not about to start showing remorse for loving it any time soon.

Rihanna's Unapologetic Artwork

Illustration by Mario Hugo for Gravité Creative.
Photograph by Melissa Forde.

Rihanna's Unapologetic Artwork

Illustration by Mario Hugo for Gravité Creative.
Photograph by Melissa Forde.

Rihanna's Unapologetic Artwork

Illustration by Mario Hugo for Gravité Creative.
Photograph by Melissa Forde.

Rihanna's Unapologetic Artwork

Illustration by Mario Hugo for Gravité Creative.
Photograph by Melissa Forde.

Rihanna's Unapologetic Artwork

Illustration for limited edition deluxe packaging lithograph series
by Mario Hugo for Gravité Creative.
Photograph by Michael Muller.

Rihanna's Unapologetic Artwork

Illustration by Mario Hugo for Gravité Creative. Photograph by Melissa Forde.

Rihanna's Unapologetic Artwork

Top disc: DVD art with illustration by Mario Hugo.
Photograph of Rihanna by Michael Muller.
Bottom Disc: Illustration by MVM remixed by Mario Hugo.

Rihanna's Unapologetic Artwork

Illustration by Mario Hugo for Gravité Creative.
Photograph by Melissa Forde.

Rihanna's Unapologetic Artwork
Rihanna's Unapologetic Artwork

Illustration by Mario Hugo for Gravité Creative.
Photograph by Melissa Forde.

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