12 January 2016 - David Bowie dies aged 69
David Bowie Allowed His Art to Deliver a Final Message
Joe Coscarelli and Michael Paulson (The New York Times, 11/01/2016)
In the video for David Bowie’s “Lazarus,” released last week, the mythic singer and rock ’n’ roll shape-shifter, ever thin but bordering on gaunt, is blindfolded and writhing in a hospital bed. “Look up here, I’m in heaven,” he sings. “I’ve got scars that can’t be seen.” In the end, a shaking Mr. Bowie retreats backward into a darkened armoire.
Mr. Bowie, who in his 50-year career reimagined the worlds of pop music, art and fashion, told very few people about the cancer that preceded his death on Sunday, at 69, a year and a half after his diagnosis. Even those working closely with him on a sudden burst of new projects were surprised to learn he had been dying.
At the same time, it turns out, he was telling everyone through his art.
Hilton Als (The New Yorker, 11/01/2016)
David Robert Jones was born, in Brixton, to working-class parents, on January 8, 1947, and the Brixton of his day was a changing place—home to members of the “Windrush generation,” West Indians who, like immigrants everywhere, had come to England looking for a better way. And the music those islanders bought to their new island no doubt influenced the artist who always wanted to be an artist; indeed, Bowie’s need to perform—to be recognized as different—made itself known when he was a child. In movement class, he claimed center stage, striking attitudes that his instructors found unusual, original. He was always an original, not least because he defied “Englishness”—not making a fuss, not standing out—by making theatre out of his body and that incredible face.
Everyone knows the story. Jones—who did not shrink from a fight—was arguing with a friend over a girl when his friend punched him in one of his blue eyes; somehow, his fingernail got caught in Bowie’s left eye. The result was a permanently dilated pupil. Just as Marlon Brando broke his nose while horsing around backstage during the Broadway run of “A Streetcar Named Desire” and the accident added to, rather than detracted from, his beauty, Bowie’s infirmity only added to his allure, an “oddity” whose romanticism imagined other places in addition to this world—places he invented and filled with longing.
Ben Quinn, Caroline Davies and Edward Helmore (The Guardian, 11/01/2016)
David Bowie’s latest album, released last week to coincide with his 69th birthday, has been described as his “parting gift” as collaborators and friends paid tribute to the iconic star after the unexpected announcement of his death.
Close friends were among those who recalled Bowie’s final interactions with them amid a re-examination of Blackstar, his final work. It includes a new single, Lazarus, whose video opens with the image of a dead spaceman and which begins: “Look up here, I’m in heaven.”
In a Facebook post, Tony Visconti, who produced a series of Bowie’s albums, revealed the significance to Bowie of Blackstar, his 25th and final studio album, released to critical acclaim.
Christopher Hooton (The Independent, 11/01/2016)
Thousands of David Bowie fans descended on Brixton, London last night, not to mourn the loss of the artist, but to celebrate his life and revel in the wide-ranging music he gifted to the world.
Hastily thrown together on Facebook after news of Bowie's death, the understandably haphazard event started fairly mutedly as people gathered in the district he grew up in, laying flowers at his shop wall mural and trading memories under the Ritzy cinema's illuminated tribute, which read: 'DAVID BOWIE. OUR BRIXTON BOY. RIP.'
Before long, however, the windows of a flat opposite the cinema were thrown open and 'Heroes' was blasted out of its sound system, to the delight of those congregated below.
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"12 January 2016 - David Bowie dies aged 69", La Clé des Langues [en ligne], Lyon, ENS de LYON/DGESCO (ISSN 2107-7029), décembre 2016. Consulté le 02/10/2023. URL: http://cle.ens-lyon.fr/anglais/key-story/archives-revue-de-presse-2016/12-january-2016-david-bowie-dies-aged-69