You may know I am a huge fan of Prince and felt such a loss when he passed.
Princes sister and Paisley Park Studios decided to tour some of his artefacts which are on display in an exhibition in London where Prince famously played 21 Nights (and I saw several of those nights).
At first I thought this was cashing in on his memory and wondered if it would be worth going but decided that I would be disappointed if I had passed up the opportunity.
I am really pleased I attended.
The 02 isn’t the most glamorous of venues but I understand why it was chosen. It is a part of Prince’s legacy and his connection with London so the choice makes sense.
We weren’t allowed to take photographs (unless we paid for the VIP experience – possibly another concern about cashing in). But I have to say having my phone locked away meant I spent more time studying the exhibits rather than snapping them.
You’re not allowed to touch things but the clothes are not behind glass so you can get really close to them.
I did start listening to the audio tour but as I attended with two friends (one of whom was as big a fan as me), we actually spent the time talking our experiences of seeing Prince live. Our views of his music, movies and reminsing about our collective love for all things purple.
I’ll be honest and say the exhibition was a bit smaller than I expected but I guess there is only so much you can exhibit.
There were guitars, hand written scripts for his films, song notes, art works, sketches and the costumes from various videos, tours and magazine shoots on display.
A personal favourite was the cloud suit created for the Raspberry Beret video. It looked so vibrant and joyful. Excatly how I recall it from the video.
I was taken aback by how sheer and light the clothes were. Also Princes eye for detail, such as the Batman logo featuring on the toe of the boots for Partyman (which I doubt anyone ever saw). Or Get Wild written on the boots of his NPG outsifts.
I’ve seen him live. We spoke to him at an aftershow party once and we saw him close up and yet the clothes were tiny. He was so small and yet such a massive character.
Maybe that’s the measure of the man that all this design, detail, exquisite clothes and flamboyance made him the man he was and that coupled with his talent made him much bigger than he physically was.
I found the rememberance wall to be quite moving. Many people had taken a lot of time to create tokens of thier love, affection and loss.
I didn’t leave a message as a kind MPLS Prince fan left a note of rememberance for me on the fence of Paisley Park when Prince passed away. It was nice to give the visitors in London a chance to do the same. I believe the London wall will be taken back to Minneapolis.
The exhibition is on for a while longer, if you were a fan and are considering going I would recommend it. I am sure you won’t regret the trip to this mini, transatlantic snippet of Paisley Park.
I’ve been thinking about it much more than I thought I would and can say the exhibition, just like Prince, left a lasting impression.
Maybe the next step on my Prince journey could be a trip to Paisley Park…