In Paris, the first street in the world dedicated to David Bowie

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(AGI) – World record for Paris, which as of today has a a street named after rock icon David Bowieinaugurated in the capital’s 13th arrondissement on the day the British star, who died of liver cancer on January 10, 2016, would have turned 77.

A big party in the village of the 13th district, where its mayor, Jerome Coumet, officially introduced the typical “commemorative” traffic sign, identical to all the others: a classic dark blue panel with white lettering, indicating “Rue David Bowie 1947-2016”, in a green frame. Today’s inauguration is actually the culmination of a procedure started in 2020 by Coumet, a declared Bowie fan, who submitted a formal request in 2020 and received the green light from the Paris council in February of that year.

Rue David Bowie has had it for a while dedicated Wikipedia entry, but now the street also exists in the real and everyday life of Parisians. It is one to be exact 50-meter road, until now called “VoieDZ/13” by urbanistswhich starts at 61 Avenue Pierre Mende’s France, a stone’s throw from the headquarters of the newspapers Le Monde and Le Nouvel Observateur, to the bridge that connects the avenue in question with the boulevard de l’Hopital.

The area is the Slavkov train station and the very modern library of Francois Mitterrand. In a post on X, Coumet announced that “13. circuit welcomes David Bowie. Dancing in the Street!”, in reference to the hit song performed by Bowie and Rolling Stones frontman Mick Jagger. The inauguration was followed by a tribute to Bowieat the county town hall, attended by his friend, journalist and Bowie biographer, Jerome Soligny.

The “Soirée”, on the fringes of a politically frenzied day, will see many guests including show business representatives and VIPs. A photographer is expected among them Geoff McCormackto the painter George Underwoodboth childhood friends of Bowie and whose works are the subject of a exhibition on view until Saturday, January 13 in the mayor’s office. At the end, an American pianist will perform Clifford Slapper, writer and producer of the tribute album “Bowie Songs One”, with voice and piano, released in 2017.

Underwood himself was the creator of the cover of “Space Oddity” and the cover of the American edition of “The Man Who Sold the World”, where, thanks to an optical effect, Bowie’s eyes seemed to have different colors – one blue, one black – reinforcing her mysterious appearance.

In a press release the city of Paris declared that it was “proud of this ancient bond that binds them to the artist”, emphasizing that they want to “continue this legacy through the inauguration” of the road. Although the “Thin White Duke”, Bowie’s nickname, had no particular connection to the 13th arrondissement, where the street named after him is located, the rock star was evidently connected to the French capital, where he first appeared outside the UK. , in 1965. In fact, when he was only eighteen years old, he performed with his then group The Lower Third during a concert at the legendary Golf-Drouot venue, nicknamed the “Temple of Rock”.

France Paris inaugurates the world's first bowie street

© STEPHANE DE SAKUTIN / AFP

A Bowie fan at the inauguration of the world’s first street dedicated to him

French avant-garde theater culture also strongly influenced his visual style. Bowie also successfully interpreted French-written songs such as “Amsterdam” and “Ma Mort” by the Belgian master Jacques Brel. A cryptic line in Bowie’s song “Aladdin Sane” refers to “Paris or maybe Hell”. Last but not least in France fan clubs like “Bowie France”who, eight years after the death of his idol, continues to sell gadgets, organize concerts and congresses on his innovative repertoire.

Reproduction is expressly reserved © Agi 2023



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