Release date: Aug. 20, 2013
Photography: Justin Hogan
Art direction: Jay West
Labels: A$AP Worldwide, Polo Grounds, RCA
Even as stark as the cover of A$AP Ferg's debut album appears, the young Harlem rapper was aiming for an abstract image that could be looked at from many angles, in an attempt to mirror the multifaceted elements of his music in visual form. Ferg is a painter, after all, so the overall aesthetic is something he pays extra attention to. To execute Trap Lord, he tapped photographer Justin Hogan and designer and painter Jay West. He's known West since art and design high school, who told Jay Z's Life and Times, "I definitely feel the connection between my art visually and his music sonically."
West adds, "When you hear a song like 'Hood Pope' or 'Fergivicious,' if you strip the surface of the lyrics, and you strip the imagery of mine, the feel and the moods match. If his music was a visual, I think it would be painted something like this." Ferg feels very strongly about West's imagery, to the point where he says, "There was no one else but him to represent my album, because he understands where I come from. We come from the same thing." —Dale Eisinger