Earth to Starman

Mick Rock’s Bowie Photos Come to Life in Seattle

“If you're ever sad, just remember the world is 4.543 billion years old and you somehow managed to exist at the same time as David Bowie.” 

That quote somehow helped a little (but not a lot) when I woke up to the news that David Bowie passed away in January 2016. Somehow, it seemed that Bowie would live forever. After all, he was otherworldly in his music, style and acting. His messaging and career choices told me it was ok to be strange, weird, awkward, fluid and in fact, embrace it all. So I did. And like any devoted fan of Bowie’s, I find myself forever curious about his life. Which brings me to Seattle…

Mick “The man who shot the Seventies” Rock has a new exhibit opening at The Museum of Pop Culture (MoPOP) which focuses on Bowie’s Ziggy Stardust years from 1972-1973. David Bowie: Starman, Shot by Mick Rock features 65 of Rock’s photographs from backstage to centre stage. Bowie told his manager at the time,

“Mick sees me the way I see myself.” 

And no one else could have done it but Rock, a fellow Londoner who had Bowie’s trust to capture him in the right light, angles and settings. But don’t just take Bowie’s word for it. Rock has also been behind the camera, shooting other icons like Lou Reed, Debbie Harry, Queen, and Iggy Pop. His photos of these legends are also on display in this show.

As if Mick Rock was there himself as your guide, the gallery includes oral history interviews and an audio tour narrated by Rock who shares personal stories of his work with Bowie.

For a brief moment, catch the starman, waiting in the sky. But here on earth in photographs. 

David Bowie: Starman, Shot by Mick Rock is on view at MoPOP through January 15, 2018. -sc