One stellar year for David Bowie, captured by Mick Rock

A new book by Taschen compiles photographs of the 1972-73 Ziggy Stardust world tour, taken by Bowie’s official photographer and creative partner.

20 February 2020

Diving deep into one of the most significant eras of David Bowie’s career, a new Taschen tome compiles photographs taken by the artist’s official photographer Mick Rock from 1972-73 around the Ziggy Stardust epoch. Ranging from candid snapshots from backstage and rehearsals to vibrant portraits depicting his kaleidoscopic style choices, the book explores all facets of the Starman phase in its glorious glossy pages.

Work began on the book in 2015 after Bowie gave his blessing for Rock to publish them all together. The Rise of David Bowie 1972-73 also includes on-stage shots, studio portraits and album images, ranging from intimate to brilliantly brash. Taschen says in a statement that the publication charts “the musical, theatrical, and sexual revolution of the groundbreaking record,” and serves as a “celebration of a fearless, transformative, and eternally inspiring artist”.

British Vogue once said Mick Rock “bore more intimate witness to Bowie the Man than perhaps any other living lensman.” His portfolio features portraits of everyone from Bette Midler to Bob Marley, Blondie, Freddie Mercury and Madonna.

The book is edited by Barney Hoskyns and Michael Bracewell, and is out today.

Last year, photographer to the stars Marcus Klinko (known for shooting Beyoncé’s Dangerously in Love album cover) unveiled previously unseen photos taken for Bowie’s Heathen album in 2002. Before that, the hugely successful, globally toured David Bowie Is show also launched as an AR app, which features the full exhibition narrated by Gary Oldman.

GalleryMick Rock. The Rise of David Bowie, 1972–1973 (Taschen)

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Mick Rock. The Rise of David Bowie, 1972–1973 (Taschen)

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Jenny Brewer

Jenny oversees our editorial output across work, news and features. She was previously It’s Nice That's news editor. Get in touch with any big creative stories, tips, pitches, news and opinions, or questions about all things editorial.

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