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Bonjour Schiphorst! Farewell Blue Vase!
and then i joined the avantgarde {iii}

september 26, 2010.

[ podcast :: sbpc 41 ... s ]

Already during the Spoerri Re:table premiere in Brussels our blue Spoerri Re:vase/lamp fell to smithereens on the floor of the Ateliers Claus' offices. Minus a number of splinters that went missing after the break, in true archaeologist's spirit I had more or less puzzled it back together again. With gaffer tape, like the one we used to fix Maurice JJ's car when its bottom fell off en route pour Schiphorst. The table's crash on the Avantgarde Workfloor on saturday July 3th broke the blue lamp again. And more. What used to be a big blue lamp was quickly growing smaller and smaller...
Otherwise, though, nothing serious was amiss and we had the Carcassonne table up and running again in no time.
On sunday July 4th it proudly took its place between Maurice JJ and myself on the upstairs stage where, at 12h sharp, the three of us kicked of the third and final day of the 2010 Schiphorst Avantgarde Festival.

avantgarde a table

For an impression of what we sounded like up there, here's Bonjour Schiphorst, which is this SB-edition's podcast.

Bonjour Schiphorst - A Table!

In this concentrated 7 minute extract of our set (built around the story of Le son de l'art à sa naissance), like a veritable Nikkelen Nelis I play the electric guitar, vibe & brush a small foldable metal stool, fingertiptouch and sweep my iPhone's Bebot, manipulate dictaphones and throw around coins on the Spoerri table, while Maurice JJ - in his usual masterly manner - performs on the baritone and sopranino saxophone.

jean-marie benoist The persistent drilling sound that you hear throughout the piece comes from Jean-Marie Benoist, who on saturday already had been performing his art live on stage with Faust downstairs. We had decided to invite Jean-Marie to contribute also to Bonjour Schiphorst, by continuing his electric stone sculpting on the workfloor next to the upstairs stage all the way through our performance. And so he did, lending an ear to the sounds that came drifting over from the stage, reacting to them by the inning and outing of his electric whatchamacallit and explaining to some worried members of the very attentive Schiphorst audience (who hurried over to warn him that there was a performance going on) that we made him do it :-)
At the end of the (true) story, which recounts how one summer night a couple of years ago I tumbled into a black hole in the floor of a dark garage somewhere in Paris, Maurice JJ put an end to the performance in an unexpected and unusually violent way by, once again but this time willingly, throwing over the table, thus adding to the impressive and unplanned series of maltreatments it had to go through in its brief re-life span.

avantgarde table crash 2

Maurice JJ's drastic measure put a definite end to - at least - the blue lamp. Before taking the Spoerri Re:table to its next public showing we will have to do some serious tinkering. Right after this second Avantgarde crash, though, we could not be bothered to put it back on its feet once again. We just quickly wrapped and packed it, asked one of the young & industrious volunteers to pass a vacuum-cleaner in order to remove the odd bits of glass that might cut the feet of possibly barefooted musicians taking the stage after us, and enjoyed our final day in sunny Schiphorst.

SoundBlog entries related to our 2010 reconstruction of Daniel Spoerri's Carcassone table:

(june 06, 2013) - A Carcassonne Yodel in Blue [Kunsttour 2013]
(december 24, 2011) - Touching Base
(april 19, 2011) - (Topographic [Table) Topographique]
(september 26, 2010) - Bonjour Schiphorst! Farewell Blue Vase! [and then i joined the avantgarde {iii}]
(august 10, 2010) - Shake your booty (on the workfloor) [and then i joined the avantgarde {ii}]
(july 18, 2010) - From (h)ear to avantgarde
(june 10, 2010) - A kitchen table and a game of cards [KT2010, ii]
(june 04, 2010) - Table archaeology: unearthing the picture trap
(may 18, 2010) - Instant coffee and (b)[re](a)d wine (the Spoerri re:Table in Extrapool, Nijmegen)
(may 13, 2010) - attention! oeuvre d atable
(july 08, 2009) - Cover thyself ( * ) Petit tour de table, grande bouffe [iii]

Here are some shots of a couple of that afternoon's up and down performances.

lisa dillan bobby conn

Norwegian musician & performer Lisa Dillan goes stand on her head to make a change. September last year she did it in the Moscow Red Square. Lisa also stood on her head at liberal conservative politician Siv Jensen's office door at the Norwegian Parliament and mere weeks before her Schiphorst appearance she headstood the Swedish Royal Wedding. Although she did not headstand the Avantgarde Festival, she did give us a fine overview of her work and showed a couple of her many other performances.


Downstairs there were pop-rocking Monica Boubou & Bobby Conn, whose flashy white show suit bore what must have been the stains of the duo's Hamburg performance of the night before.
Somewhat later Brooklyn based PAS closed the doors to the downstair's stage to keep out the bright Schiphorst sunlight and joined forces with the London based Vultures quartet in a penumbral collage of sounds and projections.

Outside in the yard, over the three days of the festival an artist called Dan (I don't know his last name) could be seen busily spray painting one piece after the other. On this last festival day Jean-Hervé had the laudable idea to try and raise some money for Dan, by auctioning off one of his paintings while it was being made.


It proved to be a pretty tough race. But by throwing in a last minute tenner, Maurice JJ and myself managed to outdo the fierce competition. We joined the Péron family as the proud new co-owners of a freshly sprayed Dan. The painting stayed with Jean-Hervé and Carina in Schiphorst, but I'm pretty sure I'll be seeing it again, at the Avantgarde Festival's next edition.

co-owned Dan

The 2010 edition then ended in a dazzling panopticon of sonic lo-tech erected by the French Toys'R'Noise, with speeches, with thanks, with farewells and with lots of wine of many a different origin and color.

toys r noise

Visiting, attending and performing at the Schiphorst Festival has been a summery highlight and a truly heartwarming experience. Many thanks to Jean-Hervé, Carina, the very capable technical staff and the many helping hands and volunteers.

Next edition: June 24-26, 2011. That does leave a decent strech of time yet to span. But we might be spared. And if we are? Let's see you there!

tags: Avantgarde Festival, Schiphorst, A Table!

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