Courage fuyons (be brave and run) is a project in 2 parts asking the following questions: What is our own attitude towards our personal reality? How far do we want to go to escape it?
The experiment took place in The Zsenne Art Lab gallery in Brussels.
I created an environment from three sources of inspiration: after parties, my father’s death from suicide, and Disney’s Alice in Wonderland, a film marking my childhood. This movie is an ode to drugs and a flight from our reality.
The next morning, partiers were invited to continue their party as long as their body can hold.
The gallery was divided into four distinct spaces:
A lady welcomed people into the first, giving them an entry ticket marked, Drink Me. This is the message attached to the bottle that makes Alice grow or shrink, giving her access to the undersized doors just like those the partiers had to use to circulate between the spaces. The other side of the ticket was a copy of the metro ticket I kept from the day my father passed away; an invitation on a journey to see what’s out there beyond death.
The second space was the heart of the action, a DJ was playing, people were dancing and drinking, and disco ball with a face was hanging as the only light source. The disco ball was at once an unmistakable symbol of the party, and dark reference to my father’s death through hanging.
In the third space was the bar where people could buy a drink or use their Drink Me ticket.
In the fourth space was the chill room. Small cardboard spaces were set where people could hide themselves, and in the pervading blackness, people could easily have fun privately. There was also a TV playing Alice in Wonderland. Finally people could see themselves in reflecting blurry walls. It was a way to tell them there was no more room, nothing else to discover except maybe themselves.
The second part consisted to show what happened in order to take some distance from the experience. Pictures and printed conversations were set on the walls while a background sound recorded during the experience was playing.