Last night at a party at Los Angeles’s Mama Gallery, Rihanna debuted the cover art for her long-anticipated next album, Anti. Taking the form of an oil painting by Israeli-born artist Roy Nachum, the red-splashed image depicts Rihanna as a child holding a balloon, with her eyes covered by a gold crown, which has become a motif in Nachum’s art. Less noticeably, atop the portrait’s surface sits a poem by Chloe Mitchell sculpted in paint-ridged Braille.
Prior to tackling album art, Nachum’s artwork was featured in a 2012 solo show inaugurating the Joseph Nahmad Contemporary gallery in SoHo. In the years since, Nachum has garnered celebrity attention from the likes of Justin Timberlake, Jay Z, and Leonardo DiCaprio.
Rihanna told Us Weekly, “I fell in love with [Nachum] because I felt like there was another spirit, there was another layer to the art. After we met, we talked about what I wanted visually, what would make me the happiest girl in the world.”
Rihanna encouraged guests to touch her Braille painting, along with the six other works on display. According to Nachum, the Braille is meant to “evoke a parallel sensation to what one takes away from a painting through sight, offering a way into the work for people who otherwise would never experience a painting.”
The album, titled Anti, will be Rihanna’s first since 2012’s Unapologetic. But though the name and cover have been confirmed, a release date has not yet been announced.