In 2018, the charitable and artistic initiative Secret 7” has launched a new form of fundraising to benefit Mind, an NGO working for the well-being of mentality ill persons. Named “Planar 1/1”, the project brings together ten international artists, including French illustrator and graphic designer Jean Jullien, around the personalization of turntables, intended for a charity auction.
The Secret 7” concept
Since 2012, Secret 7” takes 7 tracks from 7 world famous musicians and presses each one 100 times to 7” vinyls. The charity and musical collective then invites international artists to personalize each sleeve. Thus, 700 unique sleeves are exhibited for one month in a different place each time, before going on sale on the last day of the exhibition. Distributed on a first come, first served basis, they are offered to the public at £50 each. The concept relies on the element of surprise, with buyers only being able to discover the tracklist on the sale day. All profits are later entirely donated to causes curated and announced early on by Secret 7”, ranging from childhood cancer prevention to music therapy.
Since its creation, Secret 7” has produced 3,500 one-of-a-kind records with 35 different tracks and raised over £175,000 for great causes.
The Planar 1/1 project
For its 2018 campaign, Secret 7” mixes things up. Not only are the artists personalizing sleeves, but they are also invited to customize 10 famous Rega Planar 1 turntables, in their own way. In contrast to the usual event sales of the collective, each customized turntable was auctioned for two weeks on Artsy. Ten artists took up the challenge: Gavin Turk, Jeremy Deller, Jake and Dinos Chapman, Es Devlin, Stuart Semple, James Joyce, Jean Jullien, Pete Fowler, Hsiao-Chi Tsai & Kimiya Yoshikawa and Frances Richardson.
Hence, each turntable was a unique work of art, with French illustrator Jean Jullien using the Rega movement to give life to an acrylic character while the Englishman Jeremy Deller incorporated Neolithic arrowheads on the base of his turntable. Known for his most iconic artwork “Cave”, Gavin Turk decided to pay his piece a tribute by taking back its codes in designing his Planar 1 like a blue heritage plaque.
Taking the form of a "grand finale" after the vinyls sale, the turntables were auctioned online from the 29th of August until the 12th of September 2018 through the online plateform Artsy. Last November, Secret 7” was finally able to announce a total of £37,000 raised to benefit Mind, whose main mission is to work towards providing better care for people suffering from mental illnesses.
The date of the next operation is still yet unknown, for a good reason: the collective will celebrate its 7th year of existence in 2019. A symbolic birthday, promising a unique event in the making.