David Bowie, Gender Futurist

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Photographer Steve Schapiro grabbed the chance to shoot already cult musician and artist David Bowie after a rare invitation in 1974. In these images daring self-portraits creation Bowie portend freedom of sex expression is yet to come. It was as if David Bowie was an astronaut of the future, who returned in 1970, to show us what lies ahead.

In his new book, Bowie, from Powerhouse books, Schapiro releases some never-before-seen pictures of the idol and shares what it was like to have a one on one meeting with one of the most creative powers of in music and fashion of the 20th century and beyond.

“From the moment Bowie arrived, we seemed to hit it off. Incredibly intelligent, calm, and filled with ideas,” Schapiro recalls. “He talked a lot about Aleister Crowley, whose esoteric writings he was heavily into at the time. When David heard that I had photographed Buster Keaton, one of his greatest heroes, we instantly became friends.”

Bowie and Schapiro joked and laughed about shooting a series of portraits close-up on a rotten green background, because they felt it was the worst possible background color for the cover of the magazine, and so they took one on a lark – an image eventually became a People magazine cover in 1976 year.

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