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Space Oddity

  • Object:

    Phonograph record

  • Place of origin:

    London (recorded)

  • Date:

    06/1969 - 09/1969 (recorded)
    11/1969 (released)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Bowie, David, born 1947 (performing artists)
    Vasarely, Victor, born 1908 - died 1997 (artist)
    Dewhurst, Vernon (photographer)
    Philips (record label)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Vinyl and printed card

  • Museum number:

    S.434-2013

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

The title and subject of Space Oddity is said to have been influenced by William Anders' Earthrise, the first colour photograph of earth from space in 1968. In 2003 Earthrise appeared in Life magazine's 100 Photographs that Changed the World.

The cover of Space Oddity features an optical art design by Victor Vasarely (1906-1997) from his Folklore Planetaire series. Optical art was very popular in the 1960s and lead to designs being printed on fabric and used in fashion.

The V&A holds in it's collections both a c-type photographic print of Earthrise and a screenprint of the design by Vasarely used on the cover of Space Oddity.

Physical description

Vinyl LP record for the Space Oddity album by David Bowie. Featuring a photograph of Bowie's head overlaid on an optical spotted design from Victor Vasarely's Folklore Planetaire series. The words David Bowie run across the top of the design, and the Philips logo is in the top right corner.

Place of Origin

London (recorded)

Date

06/1969 - 09/1969 (recorded)
11/1969 (released)

Artist/maker

Bowie, David, born 1947 (performing artists)
Vasarely, Victor, born 1908 - died 1997 (artist)
Dewhurst, Vernon (photographer)
Philips (record label)

Materials and Techniques

Vinyl and printed card

Marks and inscriptions

DAVID BOWIE
Printed on cover in capital letters

Dimensions

Height: 8.5 cm, Width: 8.5 cm fanned out

Descriptive line

David Bowie Space Oddity LP, released in 1969

Labels and date

[G4.3 – label 4 on strip]
Keyword: ILLUSION

Space Oddity
David Bowie
1969

Bowie’s second album is a collage of musical style and influences, from the Bee Gees to Marc Bolan and Bob Dylan. The title track has remained the most famous, but others including ‘Wild Eyed Boy from Freecloud’ and ‘Memory of a Free Festival’ have remained in Bowie’s repertoire throughout his career.

V&A: S.434-2013

[2D-0412]
[22/02/2013]

Materials

Vinyl; Cardboard

Categories

Entertainment & Leisure

Production Type

Mass produced

Collection

Theatre and Performance Collection

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