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Bowie's world debuts of Hunky Dory & Ziggy Stardust were at Friars Aylesbury. We are creating a stunning statue in the Market Square.
747 backers pledged £115,199 to help bring this project to life.

Earthly Messenger Bowie Statue Photo Books Now Available to Order

Posted by David Stopps for Friars Aylesbury (Creator)
18 likes

Earthly Messenger is now just over one year old and we are happy to announce that the photographic books telling the story of how the statue was created have at last been printed and are ready for sale.

From initial design concepts, to creation and installation, the story is told by the sculptor, Andrew Sinclair, himself. The photographs were taken by his partner and fellow sculptor, Diane Coates, as Earthly Messenger was being worked on in their Devon studio, and in the Phoenix Foundry where the bronze casting took place. 

The book contains 58 pages of full colour photographs, is sized 37cm x 28cm (14.5” x 11”), bound and boxed. Please see attached photos.

We have decided to limit the print run to just 100 copies and each copy will be numbered. 

They are priced at £150 each (plus postage). 

If you would like to place an order and pay for a book before 30th April 2019, it can be signed by Andrew Sinclair with the addition of a special personal dedication to the name of your choice.

We are offering these books firstly to the people who generously supported our Kickstarter campaign, and who helped to make this sculpture possible.  After that, if there are any left, they will go on general sale via our Friars web page. 

All proceeds go to to the Earthly Messenger Bowie statue fund.

Please e.mail Sue@fmlmusic.com  for payment details if you would like to purchase a copy.

Once again, thank you so very much for making this project happen.

We look forward to hearing from you.

Love, peace, Weird & Gilly

Sue and David

EARTHLY MESSENGER - The First Anniversary Event - Sunday 24 March 2019

Posted by David Stopps for Friars Aylesbury (Creator)
23 likes

FRIARS AYLESBURY in its 50thAnniversary year 1969-2019 presents:

THE FIRST ANNIVERSARY OF THE UNVEILING OF EARTHLY MESSENGER – THE WORLD’S FIRST STATUE OF DAVID BOWIE – 

SUNDAY 24 MARCH 2.00pm – 5.00pm

Under the arches in Aylesbury Market Square.

Free to attend.

Earthly Messenger Unveiling  25 March 2018    Photo by Alan Jones
Earthly Messenger Unveiling 25 March 2018 Photo by Alan Jones

To commemorate one year since the unveiling of Earthly Messenger Friars Aylesbury presents a special event under the arches in Aylesbury Market Square on Sunday 24 March from 2.00pm to 5.00pm.

The event will echo the original event organised a few days after Bowie’s untimely death in January 2016. It will feature the music of David Bowie and a special presentation by Earthly Messenger sculptor, Andrew Sinclair, describing how he designed and sculpted the world’s first statue of David Bowie. 

Legendary photographer Michael Putland, who produced those amazing photographs of Bowie at his legendary Friars Aylesbury Ziggy Stardust world premiere on 29 January 1972, will also be in attendance, as will an Italian film crew from Bologna who are making a documentary about him. Michael’s photographs from that night in 1972 will be exhibited in the arches area. 

There will also be some special presentations during the afternoon.

Everyone is welcome to attend. We are very much hoping that many of the 800 supporters who contributed to the creation of Earthly Messenger will be there.

Background

EARTHLY  MESSENGER

The world’s first statue of David Bowie

Friars Aylesbury campaigned for two years for the world’s first statue of David Bowie to become a reality. It was paid for by Bowie fans worldwide. No public money was used. It was unveiled on 25 March 2018. A Bowie track plays on the hour every hour between 9.00am and 9.00pm.

Bowie performed the world debut of Hunky Dory at Friars Aylesbury on 25 September 1971 in the old Friars venue in the Market Square (now demolished). After the gig he formed the Spiders From Mars (although they weren’t called that yet) in the tiny Friars dressing room. 

On 29 January 1972 he played his second Friars Aylesbury show. We were all expecting Hunky Dory. He did play several songs from Hunky Dory but the second half was a completely new suite of songs which turned out to be the world premiere of The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars. Michael Putland took some amazing photographs that night. One of the photos shows Bowie leaning down as he sang ‘give me your hands’ for the world premiere of ‘Rock’n’Roll Suicide’.

In the opening track of the Ziggy album ‘Five Years’ Bowie references Aylesbury Market Square. ‘Pushing through the Market Square so many mothers sighing’.

He played three more Friars gigs. June 1972 at Friars Dunstable,

July 1972 back at Friars Aylesbury (where he flew 50 of the US’s top music journalists in especially for that one show) and in March 1977 when he played keyboards for Iggy Pop on his Idiot tour which opened at Friars Aylesbury. At that gig he and Iggy played the world premiere of ‘China Girl’.

Bowie always thought of Friars Aylesbury as his musical home. In 2014 he sent us a text  on the opening night of the Friars Exhibition in the Bucks County Museum.

Unveiling of Earthly Messenger 25 March 2018      Photo by Karl Vaughan
Unveiling of Earthly Messenger 25 March 2018 Photo by Karl Vaughan

Bowie Chicks

Posted by David Stopps for Friars Aylesbury (Creator)
33 likes

We try to keep our David Bowie statue Earthly Messenger looking its best so every now and then we give it a polish and clean the pavement around it. We noticed pigeon droppings on the far right and decided to put some extra bird wire on top of the speaker. When we got up there we realised that a pigeon, who we have since named Gertrude, is nesting behind the right hand speaker. As you probably know a Bowie track is played on the hour every hour between 9.00am and 9.00pm. Gertrude and the chicks must get it pretty loud but they seem to be thriving on it. Bowie is now in their DNA. When they fly off they'll think "what happened to the music?". 

You can see Earthly Messenger live on our permanent webcam by going to www.earthlymessenger.net. At weekends you'll see hundreds of people visiting and taking selfies, kids swinging on Ziggy's arm etc. 

Huge thanks again for supporting this project which is a permanent testament to Bowie's art and life. If you haven't already, please come and see Earthly Messenger for yourself and be a living part of the David Bowie Friars Aylesbury story.

Looking after Earthly Messenger - Hey someone's gotta do it....
Looking after Earthly Messenger - Hey someone's gotta do it....
Gertrude bringing up her Bowie chicks
Gertrude bringing up her Bowie chicks

Earthly Messenger live webcam stream now available at www.earthlymessenger.net

Posted by David Stopps for Friars Aylesbury (Creator)
23 likes
Thanks so much to everyone for your ongoing support for Earthly Messenger and thanks to the thousands of people who have visited Aylesbury since the unveiling on 25 March.
Earthly Messenger (Photo by Alan Jones)
Earthly Messenger (Photo by Alan Jones)
The live stream from the webcam can now be seen at www.earthlymessenger.net 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. The webcam feed doesn’t carry audio but look out for people dancing in front of the sculpture at about one minute past the hour every day from 9.00am to 9.00pm (UK time) when we play a Bowie track at random from an audio system above the statue. We hope to improve the definition of the video stream later in the year when high speed fibre broadband finally arrives in central Aylesbury. In the meantime the feed is in HD colour in daylight conditions and black and white at night. (UK time). You’ll see the statue beautifully framed by the eighteenth century arch of Old County Hall in Aylesbury’s Market Square.  

One thing we’ve noticed is how much kids love the statue. One of the things they seem to go for is to touch the rings on David’s wrist to see if they move. We very much want people to touch the statue. 

We still need funding so please go back to the previous Kickstarter Update (No 36) to see what’s on offer. 

We will soon be making available video and audio of Andrew Sinclair talking about how the sculpture was designed and made. You'll be able to find this on the same Earthly Messenger website with a QR code web-link. 

If you haven’t visited Aylesbury to see Earthly Messenger yet please do. The best time to see this stunning sculpture is after dark when it shines like a star. Tell all your friends when you’ll be visiting and they’ll be able to see you on the webcam feed. 

EARTHLY MESSENGER FUNDRAISER TO COVER COSTS

Posted by David Stopps for Friars Aylesbury (Creator)
8 likes
Earthly Messenger Unveiling Day 25 March 2018 Aylesbury Market Square (Photo by Karl Vaughan)
Earthly Messenger Unveiling Day 25 March 2018 Aylesbury Market Square (Photo by Karl Vaughan)

Following the wonderful unveiling day and concert on 25 March we are now only £30K short of covering costs. Thanks so much to everyone who bought tickets for the concert and to those who have recently made very kind donations in recent weeks. Huge thanks too to Marillion, Howard Jones, John Otway, The Dung Beatles, David Live and the Callow Saints for playing for free. Also massive thanks to AC Special Projects, Bose Professional, Universal Event Production, AV Systems, Impact Sign Solutions, IPB Audio, BucksTV and Archway Beauty Clinic and all the volunteers for their invaluable contributions to the project.

Many people said on the unveiling day that they wished they had put in more so that their names could have been on the plaque next to the statue. We have therefore decided to make a new updated plaque following this new April 2018 fundraising campaign.

Anyone who would like to make a new donation or upgrade their Kickstarter pledge or other donation to £250 or more can do so, and will have their name (or their business name) on the new plaque. Please contact Sue at sue@fmlmusic.com.

In addition we are making available limited edition Bowie bronze lifemasks and limited edition handmade replicas of the Earthly Messenger maquette made by Andrew Sinclair in either bronze resin or bronze. As you will see these limited edition items are expensive but are very likely to go up in value so could prove a great investment.

Here then is the complete list of what is now available. If you can help us, even if its only ordering a key fob, can we thank you so very much in advance.

EARTHLY MESSENGER FUNDRAISING LIST April 2018

Keyfobs, THE THIN WHITE BOOK – A history of David Bowie and Friars Aylesbury, the Earthly Messenger T-shirt, the Earthly Messenger concert poster and the Friars Aylesbury Bowie Posters can be ordered from the Friars Aylesbury shop at: http://goo.gl/ywpP31

For all other items please contact Sue at sue@fmlmusic.com

Bowie at Friars Aylesbury KEY FOBS (£2.00 + £0.40VAT)    £2.40

THE THIN WHITE BOOK – A History of David Bowie and Friars Aylesbury    £14.99

The official EARTHLY MESSENGER T-Shirt (pink)  (£16.67 + £3.33VAT)    £20.00

The EARTHLY MESSENGER 25Mar18 Concert Poster (£12.50 + £2.50VAT)      £15.00

World Premiere of Hunky Dory FRIARS AYLESBURY POSTER 23 Sept 1971 (official repro) (£16.67 + £3.33VAT)        £20.00

World premiere of Ziggy Stardust FRIARS AYLESBURY POSTER 29 Jan 1972 (official repro) (£16.67 + £3.33VAT)       £20.00

David Bowie LIFEMASK in bronze taken from David’s face during the filming of The Man Who Fell to Earth signed and numbered in presentation box desk mounted limited edition  (£890.00 + £178.00VAT)    £1068.00

David Bowie LIFEMASK in bronze taken from David’s face during the filming of The Man Who Fell to Earth signed and numbered in presentation box wall mounted limited edition (£890.00 + £178.00VAT)    £1068.00

EARTHLY MESSENGER maquette handmade by Andrew Sinclair in bronze resin limited edition (£6300 + £1260VAT)       £7560.00

EARTHLY MESSENGER maquette handmade by Andrew Sinclair in bronze cast in the foundry limited edition. Includes visit to the foundry.  (£11,800 + £2360VAT)                      £14160.00

Names on the permanent EARTHLY MESSENGER plaque next to the sculpture

Name or business name on the plaque in small font £250.00+

Name or business name on the plaque in larger font £500.00+

Name or business name on the plaque in larger font again £1000.00+

Name or business name on the plaque in even larger font £5000.00+

Name or business name in even larger font at top of plaque £10000.00+

Upgrades from existing pledges/donations are valid.

Thanks so much. Please come to Aylesbury and see the stunning Earthly Messenger for yourself. Photographs don't do it justice. Love peace and music. David & Sue