Lonely Planet Writer

David Bowie exhibition has become the most-visited show for 164-year-old museum

An exhibition on the late music legend David Bowie has set an attendance record as it has travelled on a worldwide tour.

Installation image of David Bowie Is at the V&A.
Installation image of David Bowie Is at the V&A. Image by (c) Victoria and Albert Museum, London

The V&A in London announced that the exhibition surpassed 1.5 million visitors at eight different locations, making it the most-visited show in the museum’s 164-year history. David Bowie Is has been on a worldwide tour of ten venues since its debut at the V&A in 2013. It has already travelled to eight sites in countries including Canada, Australia and Brazil and is in its final days at the Museo d’Arte Moderna di Bologna (MAMbo) in Italy. From there, it will head to the TERRADA G1 building in Tokyo, Japan in January 2017, followed by the Museu del Disseny, Barcelona in May.

Installation image of David Bowie Is at the V&A.
Installation image of David Bowie Is at the V&A. Image by (c) Victoria and Albert Museum, London

Bowie was considered a pioneer in the music industry and is one of the most influential performers of all time. The artist died earlier this year at the age of 69, following a battle with cancer. Co-curator of the exhibition, Geoff Marsh, said in a statement: “we are absolutely delighted that the exhibition has been seen by so many people worldwide. It’s been an amazing journey to go from our first visits to the archive to transporting the exhibition to its ninth venue in Tokyo.”

Installation image of David Bowie Is at the V&A.
Installation image of David Bowie Is at the V&A. Image by (c) Victoria and Albert Museum, London

The V&A was given unprecedented access to the David Bowie Archive to curate the first international retrospective of his extraordinary career, depicting his shifting style and sustained reinvention over five decades. Fans of Bowie can also take in a musical composed by the artist, entitled Lazarus, that is currently on in London. The play is based on the idea of a sequel to the 1976 film The Man Who Fell To Earth. Lazarus is said to have broken box office records after quickly selling out in New York. It will be running in London until 22 January 2017, with tickets available from £15. For anyone with money and the desire to own something of the musicians, on 11 November, Bowie’s eclectic art collection will be auctioned off by Sotheby’s after having been on display around the world.