The Epochal ‘David Bowie Is’ Exhibition is Going Virtual


Despite traveling from London to São Paulo to Tokyo and nine other cities, including its final triumphant stop at the Brooklyn Museum earlier this year, surely untold numbers of fans (perhaps those residing in, say, Mongolia or Papua New Guinea) had little hope of seeing the epochal David Bowie Is exhibition. Which makes the upcoming virtual edition a genuine godsend for far-flung devotees.

Of course, before it had completed its run at The Netherlands’ Groninger Museum, Bowie himself heartbreakingly departed from this mortal world (January 10, 2016, a day forever to live in infamy). So the app – a collaboration between the David Bowie Archive and Sony Music Entertainment (Japan) – will have something of the quality of a digital memorial. And despite each city having presented a slightly different version of the show, it will, hardly surprisingly, be very specifically a recreation of the seminal edition at the Victoria & Albert.

Using AR/VR technology, it will take viewers on a journey through the hallowed museum by use of 3D renderings and 360-degree reproductions – and will be enhanced by an immersive audio soundtrack. They’re also promising some gems not featured in the original exhibition – so even the more than two million attendees over its five year run have reason to geek out about it.

The David Bowie is Augmented Reality mobile app will be available for iOS and Android, and will be released January 8, 2019 – what would have been his 72nd birthday.

(Read BlackBook‘s original 2013 interview with Mick Rock and Earl Slick about the V&A exhibition here, and this 2003 Bowie interview by your author.)


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