Forest Lawn Museum exhibit documents David Bowie’s tour of Mexico City

Fernando Aceves' "Starman 1" Frida Kahlo Museum, Caza Azul Courtyard, Coyoacán, Mexico, 1997.

Fernando Aceves’ “Starman 1" Frida Kahlo Museum, Caza Azul Courtyard, Coyoacán, Mexico, 1997.

(Courtesy of Fernando Aceves)

Forest Lawn Museum in Glendale is the first in the U.S. to host an exhibit documenting David Bowie’s tour of Mexico City 20 years ago with photos of the late musician exploring historic sites and landmarks.

The free exhibit, titled “Among the Mexican Masters,” captures Bowie through 40 photographs visiting the pyramids of Teotihuacán, the Frida Kahlo Museum and locations with murals by Mexican artists Diego Rivera, Jose Clemente Orozco and David Alfaro Siqueiros.

Rock and jazz photographer Fernando Aceves was assigned to follow Bowie during the musician’s show at the Foro Sol Stadium, his only performance ever in Mexico City.

“Forest Lawn is very proud to pay homage and represent this amazing exhibit,” said museum director and exhibit curator Ana Pescador. “It is a great opportunity to find out more about not only the history of Mexico but about David Bowie.”

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Pescador met Aceves while working at the Mexican consulate in Los Angeles, where he was giving a private exhibit of about 10 photographs from the collection. After learning the images had only been shown in a smaller format in Mexico City, London and a few magazines, Pescador felt she had to get a hold of and share the entire collection.

“In this exhibit, David Bowie is appreciating another culture and speaking as someone very involved with the art — we need to respect and admire other people’s cultures,” Pescadero said. “This is what a British artist is doing to the Mexican history and to Mexico even though the two went through tough times.”

The photos were originally intended to appear as part of an unpublished article Bowie planned on writing. Now, with the collection’s debut at Forest Lawn, Aceves said he can invite people to walk alongside Bowie.

“There is one photo of Bowie in front of a mural by Diego Rivera. On the left side, you can see some kids at the classroom looking ahead, and David posed himself looking [the] same direction,” Aceves said. “Whenever I revisit that place, I see people taking pictures of themselves in the same position as David. It’s made an impact, and they want to be in those places.”

According to Pescadero, the museum is planning to add educational programming to accompany the exhibit and invite guest lecturers to explain the art and murals showcased by Bowie’s appreciation of Mexico City.

The exhibit will be on display through June 15 at Forest Lawn Museum, 1712 S. Glendale Ave., Glendale.

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Jeff Landa,

Twitter: @JeffLanda