It’s hard to believe it has almost been eight years to the day since the sad death of David Bowie. But today (January 8), to mark the rock legend’s 77th birthday, Paris has named a street after him. From today, it can be found in Paris’ Austerlitz district in the 13th arrondissement, near 61 Avenue Pierre-Mendès-France.
Why is David Bowie getting a street in Paris?
You might be thinking: Why Paris? And fair question. It’s true that Paris has played less of a part in Bowie’s life than London or Berlin, but French avant-garde culture had a huge influence on the musician’s visual style. Also, according to Paris town hall, the city is where David Bowie performed for the very first time, at least outside of the UK. He was there as an 18-year-old, in 1965, and he played at Golf-Drouot (considered the Temple Rock at the time) with his band The Lower Third.
So, to commemorate these connections to the city, the city has added a new road name to the map: rue David Bowie. And to celebrate this occasion, they are throwing a big—and free!—party at the Salle des Fêtes in the 13th arrondissement, led by journalist and Bowie biographer Jérôme Soligny. There will be Dancing in the Street!
If you happen to be in Paris over the next few days, this wonderful tribute is rounded off with a gorgeous exhibition dedicated to Bowie at the Athéna Gallery. Imagined by photographer Geoff MacCormack and painter George Underwood, both childhood friends of the artist, this free exhibition will run from January 4 to 14, 2024.
But hey, Londoners, you don’t necessarily have to fly over to Paris to dive into the fascinating world of the Starman (though we won’t stop you), but you will have to exercise a little bit of patience, I’m afraid. For an exhibit showing 80,000 items that make up the life of David Bowie through his many guises is coming to London in 2025.