It was 65 years ago this week that David Bowie released the single “Starman” and launched his commercial career. To mark the milestone, an exhibition at the V&A in London shows his design handbook of such classic 1980s style labels as Aladdin Sane, Tod’s, and Paul Smith. Some 5,000 items from Bowie’s archive, including clothes, house and travel furniture, equipment and photographs are being put on display, ready for the exhibition’s opening on Friday. Visitors will also be able to learn more about Bowie’s personal life, via books, scripts, videos and letters.
“If you’re a British person you’re likely to have met David Bowie over the last seven decades,” exhibition curator Will Gould told the Guardian, “He’s become quite a national institution.”
The exhibition marks the end of an era for the iconic singer/songwriter. As Bowie aged and in 2016 died, it became apparent that much of his art and personal items, including costumes and instruments, would no longer be considered usable.
Although the exhibit opens at the same time as Bowie’s 50th and final album, a celebratory exhibition called Nothing Has Changed, featuring many of the 40-year-old musician’s early sketches and oddball sketches and a full selection of black and white photos from Bowie’s older life, does not exist.
The designers and shop owners who Bowie purchased his pieces from over the years, however, will tell you that there was very little variance in the Bowie style over his life.
“The only way to describe David Bowie as a designer was to talk of a quality of design, of a quality of presence in the fashion world,” Gordon Richardson, the chief creative officer of the Aladdin Sane brand, said. “He has had a real power in that field over a period of 50 years.”
Read the full story at The Guardian.
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