Meet Abby Portner: The Artist Behind Animal Collective's Visuals And Gigantic Psychedelic Mouth For Centipede Hz

<p>Portner, the sister of band member Dave Portner (Avey Tare), has been the art director for the band since the early days. Here, she describes the thought behind the visuals for Centipede Hz.</p>

Animal Collective‘s newest album Centipede Hz didn’t “come out” like any ordinary album does. Rather, it landed like an enormous spaceship breaking the atmosphere in an explosion of sound and color. Descending with multisensory fanfare created in partnership with The Creators Project, Animal Collective Radio featured four radio-style transmissions, curated by the band members, which streamed on four Sunday nights leading up to the album’s release. Listen to each transmission here.

The distinct psychedelic images and colorful abstractions that have been with the band since their inception are the brainchild of Abby Portner, sister of Dave Portner (Avey Tare), and have become an integral part of the band’s visual aesthetic. As she describes in the video above, Portner has been creating cover art and tour posters for Animal Collective since she was in high school. For Centipede Hz she went even deeper, creating dynamic, custom visuals for each song on the album which streamed along with the music when the album was first released. Three tracks, along with their custom visuals, are still available to stream on Animal Collective Radio.

For this record, Portner conceived a gigantic cosmic mouth, a recurring theme throughout the visual components that go along with the album. Using the rotoscoping technique (animating and effecting over actual footage), Portner brought Centipede Hz‘s mouth motif to life, which also serves as the live performance environment for Animal Collective’s current tour. Step inside the mouth and get lost in this colorful visual world.

Watch other behind-the-scenes videos on the making of Centipede Hz here.