Bowie Turns His Own Death Into A Work Of Art

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bowielazarusDavid Bowie spent his entire career doing what only the world’s greatest artists can achieve – confounding and seducing their audiences through a never-ending cycle of self-reinvention.

There is no greater evidence of the man’s commitment to his art than the fact that his quest for reinvention continued right up until his death. I suppose death is the ultimate reinvention, and perhaps the ultimate work of art.

For sure, the prospect of his death crossed my mind as I watched the video for “Lazarus” when it was released last week. But it sure didn’t occur to me that within the span of a few days, he would be gone.

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Even without the sad context of today’s news, “Lazarus” is a powerful and moving track. Today, it is a devastating blow to the heart:

Look up here, I’m in heaven

I’ve got scars that can’t be seen

I’ve got drama, can’t be stolen

Everybody knows me now

 

Look up here, man, I’m in danger

I’ve got nothing left to lose I’m so high, it makes my brain whirl

Dropped my cell phone down below

Ain’t that just like me?

 

By the time I got to New York

I was living like a king

Then I used up all my money

I was looking for your ass

 

This way or no way

You know I’ll be free

Just like that bluebird

Now, ain’t that just like me?

 

Oh, I’ll be free

Just like that bluebird

Oh, I’ll be free

Ain’t that just like me?

 

The video really spells it out, I’m surprised nobody figured out what was coming so soon. Lying in a bed with buttons over his eyes. Looking sicker than even makeup can accomplish. Writing frantically getting some lines down on paper. Climbing weakly into the dark armoire. It is all there in plain sight. It is a heartbreaking goodbye from one of the most beloved artists of all time.

His long-time producer confirmed it all today. In a statement on Facebook, Tony Visconti wrote:

He always did what he wanted to do. And he wanted to do it his way and he wanted to do it the best way. His death was no different from his life – a work of Art. He made Blackstar for us, his parting gift. I knew for a year this was the way it would be. I wasn’t, however, prepared for it. He was an extraordinary man, full of love and life. He will always be with us. For now, it is appropriate to cry.

So I am crying like all the rest of you. I’ve been crying all day. But David Bowie is finally free, just like that bluebird. And yeah, that’s just like him. Rest in peace, you beautiful, brilliant man.

 

 

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15 comments on “Bowie Turns His Own Death Into A Work Of Art
    • Why must you comment such negativity on the day of this man’s death? Are you so tortured that you cannot acknowledge the gifts that his art has bestowed on the minds and hearts of many even though it is not of your liking? Your faith has failed you if you think that judgment is yours divvy.

  1. So very perfect! A work of art. He left this for us, his fans! How selfless! Thank you for so much! You are always in my heart! I will look at the stars and see you!

  2. He was a huge talent, I shall never forget!! From singing , writing, acting and the stage, nobody did it better!! A natural from the start a free spirit ever soaring!! He was a truthful spirit, a gentle soul!! He did all, and did it well, WELL DONE, MR. BOWIE, REST NOW,AND FLY AWAY!!!

  3. I feel him,as all,that loved him,he continues to live with in us,an was one of the greatest contributors,of the arts of of ours ,an all generations to come,He should be looked up on as a gift,to humanity ,of joy an happiness.

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