Stars for the StarMan: David Bowie Gets His Own Constellation

“When you grow up kid, you’re gonna be a star!” Most people dream of someone saying this sentence to them, a cigar in hands, big city dreams getting realized. It’s one thing to dream of being a star, of having your name in lights – it’s another to get that dream realized. And an even smaller percentage literally become stars. This is the sort of thing Greek legends work eons to become! But for the rocker self-dubbed “Ziggy Stardust,” David Bowie, that dream is not only coming true, it’s as if it was always in the making.

David Bowie: Starman

David Bowie is a legendary rock musician. Working since 1967, he had a long, illustrious career and released 27 studio albums, nine live albums, 49 compilation albums, 6 EPs – 121 singles altogether! He had five number one singles in the UK alone – even 3 soundtracks. Bowie also released 14 video albums and a whopping 59 music videos. He made an impression wherever he went throughout the world – from his stellar role as an alien in Labyrinth to the homage of two comedians doing impressions of him in Flight of the Conchords’s hilarious “Bowie’s In Space”.

He was a singular, one of a kind act: a very one of a kind David Bowie.

He was recently mourned worldwide after his death on January 10th following an 18-month battle with cancer. Throughout his long, noteworthy career, the stars have always played a very important theme. His first big success was with the single “Space Oddity,” which was the beginning of his alterego, Ziggy Stardust, an alien rockstar. He catapulted on the success of Ziggy with singles “Starman” and “Life On Mars.” Because of his long involvement with stars as a theme, mourners wanted to find a star-related tribute to the rocker. This is how the constellation idea was born.

Starman’s Life Circa Mars

The constellation itself is a perfect seven star pattern in the shape of a lightning bolt that is within the vicinity of Mars – and no, it’s not an accident. Astronomers announced the constellation’s registry within a week of the death of the rock star. Bowie’s face with a lightning bolt, in fact, is a cover of one of his biggest hits, 1973’s Aladdin Sane. It’s as if he was always meant to be in stars.


A Team Forms From Studio Brussel’s Astronomic Challenge

Studio Brussel, a Belgian radio station, teamed up with the MIRA public observatory’s key astronomers to try to make the project happen. Their biggest task to surmount was where to place the figure in the heavens. Philippe Mollet from the MIRA Observatory commented about the struggle, saying simply, β€œIt was not easy to determine the appropriate stars. Studio Brussels asked us to give Bowie a unique place in the galaxy.”

He continued, “Referring to his various albums, we chose seven stars β€” Sigma Librae, Spica, Alpha Virginis, Zeta Centauri, SAA 204 132, and the Beta Sigma Octantis Trianguli Australis β€” in the vicinity of Mars. The constellation is a copy of the iconic Bowie lightning and was recorded at the exact time of his death.”

Talk about a sign!

The Ziggy Stardust Lives On

The incredible ziggy bit of stardust was registered as a constellation, which again, appropriately sits in the vicinity of Mars. This lofty constellation is a huge part of the Stardust for Bowie project, enabling Bowie fans with Google Sky to add their favorite Bowie songs with a short note to a virtual version of the constellation. A fitting tribute to this incredible, legendary man – with a fun beautiful strange goodbye.

Bowie truly is in space.