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Lend Me Your Ear celebrates a host of famous musicians whose work has inspired generations

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All images courtesy of the artists

Music photographer Andrew Cotterill and illustrator Ben Tallon have joined forces for a new project that celebrates the individuality, creativity and self-expression of some of the world’s most renowned musicians.

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From Kanye West, Skepta and Grace Jones to Damon Albarn, Jarvis Cocker, Chuck D and The Prodigy, Lend Me Your Ear is a collaborative exhibition featuring many of Cotterill’s photographs combined with Tallon’s unique illustrative lettering.

“Ben approached me and asked if I wanted to collaborate on an idea he’d had,” Cotterill explained. “I took a look at his work and the energy felt like a great fit for my photography. How someone else would interpret my images, seeing it all in a new way was fascinating. I’ve had the pleasure of spending time with a lot of strong individuals over the years so it represented a chance to celebrate such a varied range of characters and their creativity, people who moved us in some way by staying true to what they are.”

Tallon said: “I wanted to work with Andy because there’s a humanity, an honesty to his photography that captures something vulnerable and unique in each of the many characters he has documented. In today’s world, our feet don’t touch the floor and it’s easy to forget that we each have a unique journey that is valuable, interesting and worth celebrating.

|”We are confronted with so much information, thousands of idyllic daily depictions of what life could be like, but deep down, we’re all a little lost. At a formative age, these musicians showed me why expressing our truest self is crucial if we are to make sense of the world. I want to share that. Creativity is undervalued when it can help people in so many ways. There are no better examples of that than in music.”

Alongside the Lend Me Your Ear exhibition, which takes place at the Stance store in Covent Garden from 23 May, Cotterill and Tallon are working to raise both funds and awareness for charities including CALM and the Young Urban Arts Foundation (YUAF). A limited edition collection of t-shirts will be available at Stance in Covent Garden with a percentage of proceeds split between YUAF and CALM.

The poignant and striking image of Keith Flint from The Prodigy will be auctioned off for charity at the close of the exhibition. Find out more at lendmeyourearart.com.