David Bowie, Aladdin Sane Eyes Open, 1973
© Duffy

David Bowie, Aladdin Sane Eyes Open, 1973

By Brian Duffy
About the image

During the Aladdin Sane album cover photo session in 1973, Duffy shot Bowie in the exact same position as the final record cover with his eyes open, revealing his permanently dilated left eye. One of his most recognisable features accidentally gifted to him by lifelong friend George Underwood in 1962 during a fight over a girl.  The Aladdin Sane Eyes Open image was discovered by the Duffy Archive over 30 years later and revealed to the world for use in the record-breaking 'David Bowie IS' V&A exhibition becoming as iconic as the classic album cover in the process. Visited by over 2 million people, the exhibition toured around the world to Canada, Brazil, Germany, the USA, France, Australia, The Netherlands, Japan, Italy, Spain, and America.

Taken by Duffy during the second of Five Sessions with David Bowie – Duffy’s most famous photograph dates from 1973 and is the iconic and revolutionary cover of David Bowie’s album – Aladdin Sane. A shot that became the defining look of Bowie’s long career, and has been referred to as the “Mona Lisa of pop.” Since the discovery and subsequent release in 2010, Aladdin Sane Eyes Open has become equally as iconic, often mistaken by many for the original album cover.

Collector's Note:

This image is available as an ESTATE AUTHORIZED limited edition.

The Duffy Archive selected this image to be released as an Estate Edition after Duffy's death in 2010.

The front of each ESTATE photograph bears the official Duffy Archive seal embossed on the lower left. All prints are signed and authenticated on the rear by Chris Duffy with full print details including a unique reference number. Each print is also issued a certificate of authenticity.

Release Notes:

Available Duffy Archive photographs are listed below. Please note that these are IMAGE SIZES, so the artwork itself will actually be several inches larger on each dimension. Please see the guide below to better estimate final artwork size:

15" x 15" image size = approximate 20" x 22" sheet size
20" x 20" image size = approximate 24" x 26" sheet size
24" x 24" image size = approximate 30" x 32" sheet size
40" x 40" image size = approximate 44" x 48" sheet size

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David Bowie, Aladdin Sane Eyes Open, 1973
David Bowie, Aladdin Sane Eyes Open, 1973