The Cover Uncovered: The perfect story behind Nick Cave’s naked album cover starring his wife Susie Bick
Delving into the Far Out Vault we decided to take a look at the album cover for Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds’ record Push The Sky Away starring Cave’s wife Susie Bick as part of our recurring feature ‘The Cover Uncovered’,
Bick, a former model and now founder of successful fashion design house somewhat fittingly named ‘The Vampire’s Wife’, was snapped for the cover of the Bad Seeds’ fifteenth studio album in a moment of spontaneity and inspired improvisation by photographer Dominique Issermann.
The image, shot in stark monochrome with Bick’s face obscured by her hair and stood on her tiptoes, was taken in the Cave’s family home and also depicts the Bad Seeds frontman seemingly allowing light to enter the room. While the shot is striking and beautiful in equal measure, it was later revealed by Cave to have been a totally accidental occurrence.
Photographer Issermann was actually briefed with leading a photo shoot for a French magazine about Cave’s music when, during a costume change, he caught the moment perfectly: “That picture was not set up,” Cave has explained in an interview. “It was taken in our bedroom by Dominique Issermann, the unbelievably brilliant French photographer, who was doing an editorial shoot of my wife for a French magazine.
“She was in between costumes, naked under a cape when I walked in. She just said, ‘Look, go over and open that window up’. As I went over to do it, she dropped the cape and Dominque took a few photographs.
“Later on, we saw this one and thought, ‘Wow! What a strange, beautiful, ambiguous photograph.”