I hadn’t thought of myself as Goth girl but I am drawn to the potential theatre of Hallowe’en. There’s always the expectation of a performance and the annual diet of loud clichéd plastic skulls is disappointing.
For spine chilling scary frights it’s not the theatre of the obvious, subtlety has a part to play. To make the unexpected believable, life size wont always do it, play on scale, dimension or quantity, big it up. With only close up detail to focus on it’s hard at first to recognise an object of horror, as realisation dawns, the crescendo of exquisite fear builds to an ecstacy of terror.
I love the idea that during the Italian Renaissance carnival parades were a real highlight and the guilds got very competitive about float design. Carnival was seen as the perfect PR opportunity, so they employed the best designers of the day like Leonardo, to push the boundaries and experiment with outrageous ideas. Nothing new there then!
Unexpectedly, I found myself at La Nuit Blanche, a night of mystery and alchemy in Paris. The Tuileries gardens were a perfect stage for gypsy showmanship, massive fiery baroque chandeliers, sculptures of ghostly vests eerily levitating and dark creaking machines driven by huge wheels with tall chimneys belching plumes of fire into the night sky. There wasn’t a whole load of health and safety going on, nevertheless spectators kept a respectful distance from the feral pyrotechnic sorcery. Not frightening, an inspiring experience that carried you way outside the ordinary.