David Bowie was one of the most influential fashion and design icons of the last 40 years. With his dead it’s time to review his life and his influence even nowadays, so the selection of his best looks and costumes, album covers is a matter that worth reviving.
Aladdin Sane album cover
As his alter-ego Ziggy Stardust, Bowie’s androgynous look became a defining image of the 1970s. His face painted with a pink-and-blue lightning bolt for the Aladdin Sane album cover is also one of the most enduring images of the musician, and was the most-replicated by illustrators paying tribute after news of his death.
Striped bodysuit for Aladdin Sane tour by Kansai Yamamoto
A series of outfits by Japanese fashion designer Kansai Yamamoto were used during the Aladdin Sane tour. These included patterned knitted one-pieces and billowing capes, but the stand-out garment was the striped body suit.
Ziggy Stardust sun makeup
Many of Bowie’s iconic glam-rock looks were created for his appearances as Ziggy. Paired with his bright red mullet, the musician used face paint and makeup to exaggerate his androgyny. A golden sun was applied to his forehead, while metallic eyeshadow and bright red lipstick added to the drama.
Ice-blue suit from Life on Mars? music video by Freddie Burretti
Of the many suits and costumes designed for Bowie’s early career by Freddie Burretti, the pale blue ensemble worn during the video for Life on Mars? made the biggest visual impact. The colour dramatically contrasted with the singer’s bright red hair.
Diamond Dogs Tour stage set
Bowie embarked upon the theatrical and extravagant Diamond Dogs tour to promote his album of the same name across North America. The set for the shows – designed by Jules Fisher and Mark Ravitz – was built to resemble a city, with angled skyscrapers that appeared to be oozing coloured paint. The set reportedly cost $400,000 to construct.
Union Jack Coat by Alexander McQueen
The frock coat made from a giant British flag was created by Alexander McQueen when the fashion designer was relatively unknown, but quickly became one of Bowie’s iconic looks of the 1990s. He wore the coat for the VH1 Fashion Awards, as well as on the cover of his 1997 album Earthling and during his subsequent tour.
Pierrot costume from Ashes to Ashes music video by Natasha Korniloff
Bowie dressed as Pierrot, or The Blue Clown, became the dominant visual representation of his Scary Monsters phase. The costume designed by Natasha Korniloff comprised a series of petal-life metallic panels, worn with shimmering blue tights, a white hat and pale makeup applied to look like a mask.
This is just a sample of David’s important contribute to fashion and design.
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