Vintage art photograph used for the record cover of the album "Histoire de Melody Nelson" by Serge Gainsbourg, 1971. On the picture: Jane Birkin wearing a ginger wig, holding a monkey, barefoot.
Artist : Art photographer Tony Frank
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Vintage art photography which was used as the cover photo of the album "Histoire de Melody Nelson" by Serge Gainsbourg, 1971. The photo shows Jane Birkin, posing topless with a red wig and a monkey in her arms. According to her, this same monkey plush was burried with Gainsbourg in his grave.
The album "Histoire de Melody Nelson" tells the story of love between Serge Gainsbourg and a 1' years old girl. The story says the he met her while she was biking and he hit her with his Rolls Royce.
The rest of the album, notably the songs "L'hôtel particulier", "Ah Melody", and "Valse de Melody" describe Serge Gainsbourg's feelings. However, the song "Cargo Culte" marks the end of the story, as the girl tragically dies in a plane crash.
The cover photo was realised by Tony Frank, the photographer of "Salut les Copains". Back then, Jane Birkin was pregnant with their daughter, Charlotte Gainsbourg, who was born in 1971. "She did not fit in her jean anymore, that is why the button of her jean is open!" said Tony Frank to Paris Match in 2006.To know more about the photograp