While many cultural figures have a lasting impact on fashion, David Bowie’s legacy remains unrivaled. With cult designers—Jean Paul Gaultier, Hedi Slimane, amongst other—regularly citing him as a recurring influence, and pop icons like Madonna and Lady Gaga still emulating him, his aesthetic is arguably one of the most influential of the latter half of the 20th century. While his style is often boiled down to simply “androgynous” or “gender bending,” such simple terms are a disservice to a man whose ever-evolving look was so nuanced and complex that he not only changed how we viewed pop-stars, but how we categorized celebrity style altogether.

Bowie’s style was beyond gender. In various ways throughout his career, he tore down boundaries of masculinity and femininity—challenging both—as he created an individual style as dynamic as himself. Bowie’s on-going style evolution reflected aspects of himself as an artist and as a person, a constantly evolving, genre-bending and boundary pushing phenomenon up to his death in 2016.

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