“David Bowie died peacefully today surrounded by his family after a courageous 18-month battle with cancer,” it said.
“While many of you will share in this loss, we ask that you respect the family’s privacy during their time of grief.”
Bowie’s hits include Let’s Dance, Space Oddity, Starman, Modern Love, Heroes, Under Pressure, Rebel, Rebel and Life on Mars.
He was also well known for creating his flamboyant alter ego Ziggy Stardust.
The singer only released his latest album Blackstar on his birthday on Friday. The album, which includes just seven songs, has been well received by critics.
Tributes have been paid to Bowie from across the world of entertainment. Brian Eno, who collaborated with Bowie on his albums Low and Heroes, said: “Words cannot express… rest in peace David Bowie”.
Bowie collaborator Rick Wakeman wrote on Twitter: “As I’m sure you can imagine I’m gutted hearing of David’s passing. He was the biggest influence & encouragement I could ever have wished for.”
Madonna said she was “devastated” and that Bowie had “changed her life”. She wrote on Twitter: “Talented . Unique. Genius. Game Changer. The Man who Fell to Earth. Your Spirit Lives on Forever!”
Rapper Kanye West said: “David Bowie was one of my most important inspirations, so fearless, so creative, he gave us magic for a lifetime.”
Comedian and actor Ricky Gervais, who convinced Bowie to star as himself and ridicule Gervais in an episode of 2006 sitcom Extras, wrote simply: “I just lost a hero. RIP David Bowie.”
Scottish musician Midge Ure, who helped organised the Live Aid concert in 1985 – at which Bowie performed – told ITV’s Good Morning Britain: “He wasn’t just a brilliant songwriter and an amazing creator, he excelled at everything.
“He gave us the point to run towards, we are all still trying to run towards that, everyone.
“We are all swimming in his wake, so I don’t think you could top on creativity, and consistent creativity, I don’t think you could top, anyone could top, David Bowie in the UK musical history.” (Courtesy BBC)