'Still evolving' Rolling Stones open up rock 'n' roll world to fans

Mon Apr 4, 2016 4:46pm EDT
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By Francis Maguire and Marie-Louise Gumuchian

LONDON (Reuters) - After more than 50 years of rock 'n' roll, the Rolling Stones are still pushing boundaries with their first exhibition showcasing hundreds of items from their long-running career, from Mick Jagger's jumpsuits to Keith Richards' guitars.

Billed as the "first ever major exhibition by (the group) and the largest touring exhibition of its kind ever to be staged", "Exhibitionism" opens up the Stones world to fans -- from their early, impoverished days sharing a rundown London flat in 1962 to backstage at their multimillion dollar concerts.

Instruments including guitars played by Richards and Ronnie Wood and Charlie Watts' drum kit are on display at London's Saatchi Gallery alongside Jagger's lyric book.

Some three years in the making, the display features more than 500 items from the band's archives.

"Obviously it's not infinite but it's still going and we're trying to push things that have never been," Jagger, 72, told Reuters in an interview. "I don't think there's been anything like this (exhibition) before. I mean, I don't know, I don't think so. So, you know, still trying to push boundaries a bit."

A similar sort of exhibition dedicated to David Bowie's career opened in London in 2013, drawing huge crowds. Bowie died in January at age 69.

For those who have yet to see the Stones live, a re-creation of their concert backstage area -- with makeup table, audio instructions, guitars -- leads to a 3D experience of seeing the band rock on stage to "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction".

The exhibition also recreates the messy London flat Richards and Jagger shared with late founding band member Brian Jones, with dirty plates piled up and unmade beds.   Continued...

Members of the Rolling Stones (L-R) Charlie Watts, Ronnie Wood, Mick Jagger and Keith Richards arrive for the "Exhibitionism" opening night gala at the Saatchi Gallery in London, Britain April 4, 2016. REUTERS/Luke MacGregor