London’s Victoria & Albert Museum has acquired David Bowie’s extensive archives, the Associated Press reports. The collection contains more than 80,000 items, including handwritten lyrics, letters, sheet music, original costumes, fashion, photography, film, music videos, set designs, album artwork, awards, and more, which will be on display in 2025 at The David Bowie Centre for the Study of Performing Arts. The new building is an extension of the V&A’s East Storehouse and will be located in Stratford’s Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.
The archive’s acquisition and the new Bowie center are made possible thanks to the David Bowie Estate and a 10 million pound donation from the Blavatnik Family Foundation and Warner Music Group. “With David’s life’s work becoming part of the U.K.’s national collections, he takes his rightful place amongst many other cultural icons and artistic geniuses,” Bowie’s estate said in a statement. “David’s work can be shared with the public in ways that haven’t been possible before, and we’re so pleased to be working closely with the V&A to continue to commemorate David’s enduring cultural influence.”
We are thrilled to announce that the exceptional archive of legend @DavidBowieReal is coming to the V&A! Spanning 80,000 items across his 60 year career, you can explore Bowie’s life’s work in ways never possible before at @vam_east Storehouse from 2025 #DavidBowieArchive pic.twitter.com/sTGtJnydKB
— V&A (@V_and_A) February 23, 2023