Heroes – Bowie by Sukita


The legend of David Bowie in one hundred shots

Heroes – Bowie by Sukita

PALERMO |28 May – 31 July 2021

Palazzo Sant’Elia

“We can be Heroes, just for one day”

David Bowie | 1981

April 1977, David Bowie and Iggy Pop have just arrived in Tokyo to promote The Idiot: Masayoshi Sukita has already known Bowie for five years, ever since, struck by a poster of “The Man Who Sold The World”, he managed to get in touch with the White Duke thus initiating a relationship that would last until the singer’s death. 1977 then: during a day off, Sukita asks Bowie and Iggy Pop to pose for him in a short photo session. In just two hours, Sukita shoots 6 rolls of film and also takes the photograph that he didn’t know would later become the famous cover of the “Heroes” album. Later he will also add other shots of the two artists around Tokyo, or during Iggy’s birthday party. The only photos that document the friendship of two authentic people who survived themselves and the world around them remain:

It is just one of the many stories that leap out from the walls of Palazzo Sant’Elia, where next Friday (May 28) the exhibition “Heroes – Bowie by Sukita” will reopen to the public – after the forced closure due to the pandemic long friendship between Bowie and the Japanese photographer. An immersive exhibition, in which the extraordinary shots are at ease on the walls of the noble palace: as if Bowie’s visionary universe, which Sukita has been able to interpret as a refined esthete, stretches softly between frescoes and gilding, on the notes of pieces that made rock history.

The exhibition has been extended until 31 July: it can be visited from Monday to Thursday from 9.30 to 18 (last admission at 17), on Friday until 20 (last admission at 19). Saturday and Sunday from 11 to 14, and from 17 to 21. Tickets on sale at Palazzo Sant’Elia and online on Vivaticket.

“The reopening of the Palazzo Sant’Elia exhibitions has the flavor of hope for the future – explains the superintendent Antonio Ticali – We deemed it appropriate to extend the “Heroes | Bowie by Sukita”, postponing the inauguration of the new cultural events, to continue to offer an engaging experience, in which photos and music tell the story of the legend. The new hours of the exhibition which cover the whole week, and in particular, the evening openings from Friday to Sunday, have been conceived to meet the public who, after a long period of closures, will want to linger, perhaps even in Rosaelia, the new restaurant space inside Palazzo Sant’Elia. The decision to open the exhibition on Monday is also a gesture of attention and support to hotels and B&Bs that ask for cultural proposals at the beginning of the week,

Promoted and organized by OEO Firenze Art and Le Nozze di Figaro with the Sant’Elia Foundation, the exhibition is curated by Ono Arte Contemporanea, with the patronage of the Municipality of Palermo and the Metropolitan City of Palermo. MLC communication.

HEROES | Bowie by Sukita

It is a retrospective dedicated to the forty-year professional and personal relationship between one of the most important icons of contemporary popular culture and the Japanese master Masayoshi Sukita, probably the most important photographer with whom David Bowie has ever worked. Palazzo Sant’Elia hosts over 100 portraits, some in national previews, to retrace a strong partnership, which lasted for years and countless sessions, around the world, in the studio and on the street. For the first time, the exhibition is accompanied by an immersive video installation that allows the visitor to dive into the world of Bowie and Sukita.

The collaborative relationship between the two began in 1972: the young Japanese photographer arrives in London to immortalize Marc Bolan and the T-Rex and, although he doesn’t know who David Bowie is, he decides to go to one of his concerts because he is irresistibly attracted by the poster that promoted him and depicted him with one leg raised, on a black background. Of that moment Sukita recalls: “Seeing David Bowie on stage opened my eyes to his creative genius. In that circumstance I watched Bowie perform with LouReed and it was really powerful… Bowie was different from other rock stars, he had something special that I absolutely had to capture with my camera ”. Sukita manages to meet Bowie in person thanks to the help of her friend and stylist Yasuko [Yakko] Takahashi, and gets a shooting. Bowie is struck by Sukita’s style and,

Over the years Bowie and Sukita have worked together on almost every occasion when the former was in Japan or when the photographer was in the United States, but the studio shoots were soon followed by more familiar and personal photographic sessions, such as the one made in Kyoto in 1980, in days of pure vacation. The relationship that had developed between the two allowed the birth of some of the most famous images of David Bowie but they also discover the most authentic nature of him. An example of this is undoubtedly a shot from 1989, entitled KI, which in Japanese means both “soul” and “air” at the same time: Bowie immersed in listening to a Sakamoto record, stares at the lens, opening himself completely to the photographer as never happened Before.

The exhibition catalog is published by OEOFirenze.


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Heroes – Bowie by Sukita

28 maggio – 31 luglio 2021

Palermo | Palazzo Sant’Elia

Via Maqueda, 81

Orari:Lunedì | giovedì 9.30 > 18

venerdì 9.30 > 20

Sabato e domenica 11 > 14 e 17 > 21

A cura di Ono Arte Contemporanea

Promozione e organizzazione OEO Firenze Art

Le Nozze di Figaro | Fondazione Sant’Elia.

Patrocini: Comune di Palermo

CittàMetropolitana di Palermo

Comunicazione: MLC Comunicazione.

Biglietto: intero 8 euro.

Ridotto 6 euro, 4 euro per le scuole, gratuito fino a 6 anni

Convenzioni sul sito www.fondazionesantelia.it

Ticket alla biglietteria di Palazzo Sant’Elia

e online su Vivatickets

Info:www.fondazionesantelia.it | +39.091.2712061

www.oeoart.com | +39.055.0946163