Unique Illustrations That Show The Disturbed World Of Pink Floyd

March 15, 2017

|Rodrigo Ayala

There's always been a shadow of chaos lurking in the world, masked behind wars, terrorist attacks, human rights violations, etc. However, this human madness can also evolve into creative works of art that appeal to our senses and soul. We can find a perfect example in Pink Floyd's music. Considered as one of the best progressive rock bands of all times, this band's music is characterized by constant allusions to insanity.


The band's first lead vocalist, Syd Barret, was a schizophrenic genius who had to quit the band due to his mental condition and his addiction to LSD. Years later, the band created one of the greatest albums of rock's history: The Wall (1979). It's a conceptual album about a music star who is trapped in a mental decline that isolates him from the world. This character's delusions and depression is a consequence of his father's death during WWII, the overwhelming fame he's living, the overprotectiveness of his mother, the oppressive education he had, and an excessive use of drugs.




This album was  successfully adapted into film in 1982 by filmmaker Alan Parker. He managed to illustrate Pink Floyd's music with psychedelic images created by the artist Gerald Scarfe. He masterly incorporated his obscure style into the disturbing themes presented in The Wall.

The original artwork of the film was recently released to the market. The commercialization of these illustrations was significant for many art, rock, and Pink Floyd lovers, as well as the members of the band, who are still making history through their legacy and creativity.




Gerald Scarfe chose 11 paintings used in the movie. Among these pieces, the ones that stand out are the original storyboard, "The Scream," "Education For What?", and "The Teacher." The collaboration between the band and the artist began even before they started recording the album. Scarfe was contacted by Roger Waters to work with the visual esthetic of the album. The illustrator created a series of images and designed the inflatables that the band would use in their tour to promote The Wall.

The artwork mixes oneiric elements with an unforgettable visual richness. Without a doubt, the paintings created by Scarfe seem to emerge from the fantastic realm. The monsters in each piece are the perfect representation of the nightmares that lurks inside our minds. Only Pink Floyd's music is capable of awakening the senses and delving into the deepest levels of the human psyche to show the unspoken anxiety most people experience.




Translated by María Isabel Carrasco Cara Chards

Rodrigo Ayala

Rodrigo Ayala