Did Taylor Swift Rip Off Ihsahn’s Album Artwork?


Twitter was all Taylor this weekend, as the pop star surprise-released a new album, Folklore, on Friday, July 24. Even the metal world, normally unconcerned with Taylor Swift (this black metal cover of “Bad Blood” notwithstanding), got in on the action. At issue: the cover artwork, which bears a resemblance to Ihsahn’s Telemark, released earlier this year.

Telemark cover artist David Thiérrée took to Instagram over the weekend to point out the similarities. Thiérrée approached the issue in a light-hearted fashion, pointing out that he would’ve done the job for much less money than Taylor likely paid:

“Well, folks, I ‘m not the only one to think that Taylor Swift’ s new visual is very Metal… Even very close to Ihsahn ‘s artworks I made. I could have done it for her, probably for a cheaper price than what she paid ????????”

You can take a look at both covers side by side below. While they certainly bear a resemblance to one another, I think it’d be a stretch to claim Swift ripped off Ihsahn; barren winter treescapes all kinda look the same. Ultimately I think Thiérrée is just having fun here and isn’t particularly upset about any alleged transgression, and it certainly is amusing that a country-turned-pop star utilizes similar imagery as one of black metal’s crown princes.

Update, 2:23pm EDT: Ihsahn himself has now commented: “So, anyone check out the new @taylorswift yet? Personally I like the design????????”

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