When David Bowie shuffled from this mortal coil in January 2016, I took a quiet moment to myself; he'd had a profound impact on my teenage years as I'm sure he influenced the lives of many millions around the world as we searched for ways through the angst of youth. And now, as time goes by, it's so good to see that he is being remembered as far away as Japan with an exhibition of both his work and memorabilia. The theme of the communication is the iconic image from the "Aladdin Sane" album cover shot by the late, great Brian Duffy.
However, cast you eyes to the right of the official poster on location and you'll see a second, incredible work, taken from the 1977 album "Heroes", here created by the gifted artist Takeshi Sato. And I was fortunate enough to share a glass of wine with him and talk about his work. Incredibly passionate, he not only creates characters seemingly from thin air, he works with brands such as adidas and spends time with children to share the pleasure and beauty of art, and how anyone can be a part of this, they just need to believe. And apparently dragons are big across Asia.
When many visualise their thoughts of Japan the first concepts that spring to mind are Toyota or Sony or the Nintendo Wii. And not much seems to have changed in a decade or more. However, in this country, often perceived to be on something of a downhill slope when it comes to the new, Takeshi Sato and his friends are proving everyone would benefit from taking a closer look and see that creativity remains innovative and powerful in Japan. And just like David Bowie there really is Life on Mars. And it's not just sentient, it's overwhelmingly vibrant.