David Bowie's archive to be made public at V&A East, Storehouse
- Written byLondon College of Fashion
- Published date 24 February 2023
On Thursday 23 February, London College of Fashion, UAL's East Bank partner and neighbour, the V&A announced that the archive of legend David has been donated to their archives by the late rock artist's estate – revealing the creative processes of one of the most pioneering and influential figures in the history of live and recorded music, film, fashion and beyond. From 2025, the archive will be made available to the public, from fans to students and researchers, through the creation of The David Bowie Centre for the Study of Performing Arts at V&A East Storehouse, in Stratford’s Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.
Encompassing more than 80,000 items, the archive traces Bowie’s creative processes as a musical innovator, cultural icon, and advocate for self-expression and reinvention from his early career in the 1960s to his death in 2016.
Spanning Bowie’s career, the archive features handwritten lyrics, letters, sheet music, original costumes, fashion, photography, film, music videos, set designs, Bowie’s own instruments, album artwork and awards. It also includes more intimate writings, thought processes and unrealised projects, the majority of which have never been seen in public before.
About V&A East Storehouse
Opening at Here East in 2024, a short walk away from the V&A East Museum on East Bank adjacent to LCF's new building, V&A East Storehouse offers a new immersive experience, taking visitors behind the scenes and providing unprecedented public access to V&A collections. The Storehouse's programme will explore why objects are collected, how they are cared for, conserved and displayed and will reveal the latest research emerging from the collections. Further spaces within the centre will host pop-up displays, workshops, performances and screenings alongside live encounters with the museum's work – from conservation and research to exhibition preparation. This new model builds on the continued success of The Clothworkers' Centre for the Study and Conservation of Textiles and Fashion, which will be relocated to the new centre from Blythe House in west London, where a significant proportion of the collection is currently stored.