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Indian E-music – The right mix of Indian Vibes… » ‘Western society has little space for ecstasy’: back to Berlin’s 90s club scene

‘Western society has little space for ecstasy’: back to Berlin’s 90s club scene

Delivered... Lyndsey Winship | Scene | Mon 30 Sep 2019 6:01 am

Feted for her macabre and freaky stage shows, Gisèle Vienne has created a time-bending piece of ‘physical philosophy’ inspired by her clubbing days

When Gisèle Vienne was growing up in Grenoble, France, her artist mother used to say, “paintings are cheaper than wallpaper”. So that’s exactly what they had, all over their walls. Vienne’s mum is Dorli Vienne-Pollak (a former student of Oskar Kokoschka), who made “pretty crazy, transgressive works” inspired by everything from 80s punks and strip clubs to fantasy battle scenes. It must have been quite an eyeful for a child.

Today, Vienne’s Paris home is completely white. It’s a small rebellion against her upbringing, which, balanced with the influence of her “overeducated French intellectual” father, makes complete sense of the artist Vienne has become. Her works in puppetry, theatre and dance (including Jerk, Kindertotenlieder, The Ventriloquists Convention) make headlines for their macabre obsessions: sex, violence, fantasy, serial killers and freaky dolls. Bubbling under all that is a vibrant intellect. Vienne’s conversation down the phone from France bounces fizzily from early 20th-century sociology to transcendental meditation.

Crowd is at Sadler’s Wells, London, 8-9 October, as part of Dance Umbrella, and at Tramway, Glasgow, on 16 October.

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