A selection of photos taken of David Bowie that haven’t been seen for over 30 years have gone on display in the glittering Fitzrovia Chapel.

It’s late 1992, and David Bowie was preparing for the release of his 18th studio album, Black Tie White Noise, when photographer Kevin Davies was commissioned to photograph Bowie for a series of images which would be used to promote the album.

The session took place at a studio space in Clerkenwell. Bowie subsequently approved a selection of images for press use, after which Davies placed the original rolls of film, contact sheets and prints in storage, where they stayed for almost 30 years.

In 2020, during the Covid lockdown, Davies uncovered the boxes to reveal perfectly preserved film negatives from that day with Bowie, and now 20 of the 400 negatives found form an exhibition about one day with David Bowie. Candidly, from the title and description, I had expected a series of candid photos following a day in the life of the musician, whereas it’s actually a collection of studio photos of David Bowie in poses.

Good photos, and probably a day’s work taking them, but not really offering uncensored insights into the musician as a man. That said, they’re still a good collection of portrait shots of David Bowie, and bound to excite any of his fans.

Putting the exhibition inside the Fitzrovia Chapel also gives the exhibition a very pleasant contrast between the austere white portraits and the golden walls of the chapel. Had the portraits been displayed in a conventional white gallery, they’d have looked washed out.

Here, they stand out proudly, and the artistry of the poses and the colours stands clear to see.

The exhibition, David Bowie – A London Day is at the Fitzrovia Chapel, a short walk from Tottenham Court Road tube station until 20th March 2024 and is free to visit.

The exhibition is open Tuesday to Saturday from 11am to 6pm, and on Sundays from 12 to 5pm. Closed on Mondays.


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