I spent Saturday morning finally getting a look at the much-publicised David Bowie Is exhibition at London's V&A Museum, and to be honest I could have spent all weekend there. I ended up having about two hours there, and having to rush a little bit through the final sections as my friends were on a tighter schedule, but there was much more to spend time with, and I'll be making another trip before it ends in August.
It's a truly lovely experience for anyone who's spent most of their life staring at Bowie's LP sleeves, watching his promo videos and acting performances, and soaking up the visual aspects of his public personae. It's also an exemplar of what an exhibition might be. Whilst individual items might impress (oh to stand so close to that pierrot costume or to gaze upon Edward Bell's enormous artwork for Scary Monsters!) it's the cumulative effect that persists the longest. Was any living man's artistic life ever so thoroughly examined? Has anyone ever worn so many clothes that are so recognisable to so many people?
I could fill multiple posts with my thoughts on the various artefacts on display, but I'll wait until the next Re:Sleeves show to talk about them with Ben Waddington, and I urge anyone who's even curious about Bowie's work and life to see the show for themselves. Advance tickets are sold out, but 450+ tickets are available from the V&A daily. I'd get there early if I were you, and budget extra for what you'll spend in the shop while you wait for your entry slot.