Storm Thorgerson

Yui Mok/PA Wire

He wasn't an official member of Pink Floyd but he might as well have been.

Storm Thorgerson, the English graphic designer best known for creating a slew of iconic album covers for the classic rockers, including those for The Dark Side of the Moon and Wish You Were Here, died Thursday.

The sad news was announced on Pink Floyd's official website.

"His ending was peaceful and he was surrounded by family and friends. He had been ill for some time with cancer though he had made a remarkable recovery from his stroke in 2003. He was in his 70th year," said his family in a release.

In a separate statement, the group hailed Thorgerson as a "graphic genius, friend and collaborator."

"He has been a constant force in my life, both at work and in private, a shoulder to cry on and a great friend," stated Pink Floyd guitarist David Gilmour, who noted he had known Storm since the two were in their teens. "The artworks that he created for Pink Floyd from 1968 to the present day have been an inseparable part of our work. I will miss him."

Among numerous accolades he showered upon Thorgerson, Floyd drummer Nick Mason called him a "tireless worker right up to the end...Irreplaceable and unforgettable, but leaving a wonderful legacy of ideas, film, writings and art work."

Born Feb. 28, 1944 in Middlesex, England, Thorgerson met Gilmore as well as Pink Floyd founders Roger Waters and Syd Barrett while the four were in primary school in their teens.

After embarking on a design career, Thorgerson formed the graphic art group Hipgnosis and dreamed up bold, surrealist cover art for a slew of rock acts, including Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath, Genesis, Muse, Ween, AC/DC, and Paul McCartney & Wings.

But Storm's most memorable sleeve design was for Pink Floyd, including the band's most famous and bestselling album, The Dark Side of the Moon, which featured a simple prism with a refracting rainbow-colored beam shooting out of it, supposedly meant to represent the band's psychedelic stage lighting.

Thorgerson is survived by his mother, Vanji, his son, Bill, his wife, Barbie Antonis, and her two children, Adam and Georgia.

  • Share
  • Tweet
  • Share