Kfda 2014: Sarah & Charles

Kurt Snoekx
© Agenda Magazine
(© Heleen Rodiers)

You can’t get much closer to a dream than the Brussels-based artists duo Sarah & Charles, when they were asked to decorate the Kunstenfestivaldesarts’ festival centre in the old Marivaux cinema. The duo lives and breathes film and has been doing an incredible job exploring the boundaries between fiction and reality, and making them explicit. “When we first saw the location, we really felt like we’d arrived in a surreal, Kafkaesque story. You come in Las Vegas style, and then, like in a Michel Gondry film, you go through a little door right into John Malkovich’s head and come out into some wasteland. Audiences will be able to experience this literally: from the enormous cinema, you just have to go through a little door to get to the Ingmar Bergman gym. [Laughter] Hallucinogenic.” Sarah & Charles’s playground stretches from the renovated hall that is part of the Hotel Marivaux – where they have also installed a restaurant – to the enormous, completely dilapidated old cinema behind it, where the club experiences a transformation. “We wanted to play with the idea of the façade, with the front side and back side, that always features prominently in our work and which is very present here anyhow. We knew from the beginning that we couldn’t touch the cinema. That is a décor in its own right, glittering and tragic at the same time. In The Cover-Up, we aim to underscore the inauthentic majesty of the entranceway, sweetening the renovated part to bring it to the same level as the cinema: with a pink carpet as a pedestal for a bar of marble printed on vinyl, wrapped and replicated columns, and hard light. And all this as the backdrop to the festival workers in marbled shirts, like actors on their own stage.” And then, on 2 May the cross-fading starts, from clean to crumbling walls. “Or as the team calls it: ‘from XTC to heroin.’” [Laughter] (KS)

Sarah & Charles: The Cover-Up
Cinema Marivaux
KUNSTENFESTIVALDESARTS • 2 > 24/5, Verschillende locaties/Divers lieux/Various locations, festival centre/box office: Cinema Marivaux, boulevard Adolphe Maxlaan 98, Brussel/Bruxelles, 070-22.21.99, www.kunstenfestivaldesarts.be

Photos © Heleen Rodiers

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