Beatles to Bowie Brings 60s Icons to National Portrait Gallery

Beatles to Bowie Brings 60s Icons to National Portrait Gallery

FAMOUS photos and other memorabilia from every year of the 1960s go on show at the National Portrait Gallery from tomorrow in the Beatles to Bowie exhibition.

Apart from classic pics of the two headline acts, other big names from the time of Swinging London get plenty of attention, too.

You get a rock rebel Cliff Richard, a leather-jacketed Tom Jones staring at his Welsh valley green, green grass of home, pouting Mick Jaggers, Cilla, The Kinks, Marianne Faithful and The Who, who look like they are ready to take on the world.

Great portraits and poignant nostalgia, but there’s a bit of a we-did-get-fooled-again feel to it all. Partly, that’s because out in the real world, the youthful promise of the period collapsed later, but part of it is down to the exhibition itself.

Without much context, apart from the year-by-year arrangement, which at least hints at the wider world through changes in fashion – mods! hippies! – Beatles to Bowie can’t help but stick with the well-worn idea that the 60s was all about the look, albeit one helluva look.

Beatles to Bowie is on at the National Portrait Gallery from 15 October until 24 January, 2010. tickets are £12.50.