It is one of the most iconic albums by David Bowie and contains “Heroes”, the title track that has become an hymn for some generations. The album was recorded in Berlin at the Hansa Studios right next to the Berlin Wall and together with Low and Lodger forms the Berlin trilogy, for many, and Trendenz also, the best in Bowie’s career, along with Scary Monsters which would be recored years later but still retains the Berlin influences and the Kraftwerk influenced electronic sound. 35 five years later “Heroes”, “Neukoln”, “The Secret life of Arabia” or “Sense of doubt” remain timeless masterpieces and a bring us back to the cold war days of West Berlin, an isolated city at the time but whose isolation has contributed to a brilliant set of songs like these. Aside from the musical genius, thanks to a great extent to the influence of Brian Eno, Heroes is thus both a musical and historical document
Jean Paul Gaultier paid tribute to them last October, filling the catwalk with new-romantic looks and androgynous styles. Steve Strange, Visage frontman, is out and about again and has just released a new album. And images of Bowie, the man who inspired a whole generation of Blitz Kids, are everywhere to be seen in London thanks to the comprehensive exhibition on his persona at the Victoria and Albert Museum.
The time is probably not ripe for a full on new romantic comeback. But the fatc is that, 30 years after, the word Blitz is everywhere in London. And the events last weekend in the British capital were there to prove our case. Celebrating the launch of “As Seen in BLITZ: Fashioning ’80s Style” a book by Iain R. Webb, the Institute of Contemporary Art in London hosted a pop up show under the name “We’re Not Here To Sell Clothes: The Making of BLITZ Fashion”, curated by Iain R Webb himself and where this former fashion editor invited special guests for a series of talks and for film screenings on this particular subject.
As Seen in BLITZ: Fashioning ’80s Style” focuses on the 80’s style and culture and features a whole range of images, text and interviews that bring us to the pages of BLITZ magazine. London was the place to be in the early eighties, a city crowded with punks and new punks, and that new tribe that changed the face of clubland with new daring looks and a hedonistic attitute. Boy George, Comme des Garçons, Katherine Hamnett, Jean Paul Gaultier, John Galliano, Jean Paul Gaultier, Issey Miyake, Franco Moschino, Rifat Ozbek and Vivienne Westwood were common place for this crowd and particularly in the pages of BLITZ magazine under Iain R. Webb, the magazine’s fashion editor between 1982 and 1987. The poweful editorials, the subersive nature of its pages and some of the full looks can now be seen in this book that shines a light on this peculiar urban movement that now and then makes a comeback either in music or fashion.