Never Seem Photos of David Bowie by Fashion Photographer Markus Klinko
The news of David Bowie’s passing on January 10, 2016 prompted a continuous outpouring of tributes from around the world. But the Magic City got a glimpse of the beloved music legend’s life in “David Bowie: Unseen,” an exclusive collection of never- before-seen photographs by award-winning celebrity and fashion photographer Markus Klinko at the Markowicz Fine Art Gallery in Miami’s Design District. It debuted back in 2016 and we share the highlights of this memorable exhibition.
In partnership with Fujifilm, the intimate exhibit features a set of 14 Fujifilm instant film prints by Klinko taken in 2001 as well as other images – both intimate and daring – of the pop culture icon whom Klinko met through Bowie’s wife, supermodel Iman. She hired Klinko to photograph the cover of her book, “I am I man,” in the summer of 2001. “He liked what he saw,” Klinko said. “And he mentioned he was working on a new album and he would call me.”
Shortly after, they would meet again in the fall of 2001 to shoot the cover of Bowie’s 2002 album, Heathen. “Time passed, 9/11 happened and New York was in a somber mood, but he did call me,” he said. “He invited me to his recording studio; he played the tracks for me and explained that he wanted it to express the loss in God, the loss of belief in God. The blind eyes in this cover basically expressed a man who was searching for the truth as he kind of turned his back from Christianity.”
Although most of these images are from this successful photo session for his CD, other photos are from magazine covers shot by Klinko including GQ and Interview magazine. But the majority of the prints in the show have never been seen, Klinko said. “So this is quite a show. It’s really kind of special because people get to see these photos for the first time. Of course, now they’re leaked online, which is part of having an exhibit, but I’m happy there’s so much interest in these photos.”
Limited edition photographs are available for sale and net proceeds benefit Gabrielle’s Angel Foundation for Cancer Research. Bowie died after an 18-month battle with cancer. “The auction for Gabrielle’s Angels means a lot to me,” said Klinko. “Together with Fujifilm, which made this show possible, we’re happy to support this cancer charity because they’re funding critical research and are very successful.”
Klinko has worked with a number of celebrities – from Beyoncé and Mariah Carey to Lady Gaga and Naomi Campbell, to name a few – but to him, a few of them just stand out. The world-renowned photographer will always remember Bowie’s extraordinary approach and amazing attitude towards work and life.
“At the time when I met him and he hired me for this album cover, I never shot anything in black and white. All my work was in color and he wanted specifically black and white images for his album cover. I said to him, ‘You realize that’s not what I do.’ And he said, ‘That’s exactly why I’m hiring you to do that because it will push you to go further.’”