Friday, December 11, 2009

H. Bustos Domecq, 1967 (translated 1976):
"[Jean-Françoise Darracq] opened in Geneva a restaurant exactly like all others, serving dishes in no way different from those of the past: the mayonnaise was yellow, the greens green, the cassata a rainbow, the roast beef red. He was at the point of being dubbed a reactionary when then and there he laid the golden egg. One evening, in perfect calm, with a smile about to flicker across his lips and with that sureness of hand that genius alone commands, Darracq carried out the simple act destined to place him forever at the topmost point of the pinnacle in the entire annals of cookery. He snapped out the lights. There, in that instant, the first tenebrarium was launched."

A bOING bOING contributor, 2009:
"I'm at Opaque, a fancy restaurant in San Francisco in which patrons dine in perfect darkness. [...] In addition to offering a tasty five-course prix fixe menu, Opaque forces us to live without our vision for a few hours — most of us rely on the sense of sight heavily during our daily lives, and we don't really know what it's like to not be able to see a thing."

Evidently the best way of keeping abreast of cultural trends is to read parodic essays from 40-odd years ago.

The connection between Peter Eisenman* and Domecq's chapter on uninhabitable architecture ("The Flowering of an Art") is left as an exercise for the reader.

* Deconstructivist architecture: "Eisenman's focus on 'liberating' architectural form was notable from an academic and theoretical standpoint but resulted in structures that were both badly built and hostile to users. [...] 'By some scale of values [Eisenman] was actually enhancing the reputation of his building by letting it be known that it was hostile to humanity.' "

10 comments:

merc said...

Blinded consciousness my favourite fish.

Substance McGravitas said...

I think I have to be more careful with the JanusNode.

Substance McGravitas said...

In comments there appear to be a bunch of places that have been doing this for years.

mikey said...

Man, it's really quite sad when you think about it. Surrounded by comfort and endless forms of 'entertainment', temperature-controlled, wrapped in routine and the safety of locks, airbags and paramilitary police forces, 21st century culture has become de-stimulated, a sensory deprivation chamber as big as the culture itself, desperately searching for something...anything. Something different, something that feels raw and uncontrolled, yet is still safe and warm.

One can only imagine the pathetic, desperate 'experiences' to be offered in upcoming months and years. And wonder if what we've built is not so much a culture but a prison...

Smut Clyde said...

I like the phrase "a sensory deprivation chamber as big as the culture itself" and intend to steal it. In exchange, here's a sensory-deprivation skull.
I take it that we can't lure you to New Zealand with promises of guaranteed-safe Adventure Tourism packaged experiences?

Smut Clyde said...

there appear to be a bunch of places that have been doing this for years.
I did not notice them at the time so they do not exist.

mikey said...

I want that chair, but even more I want a giant skull in my living room, whether it has any actual intrinsic functionality concealed within it or not.

But here we are, barely noon and my day is complete, for today I learned that there is a Chair Blog, and I'm fairly certain that there is essentially zero hope that I will acquire a more important bit of wisdom on this day...

Capcha suggests I peruse the tranad

M. Bouffant said...

Also dining from a naked person's body.

This is why I remain safely cocooned, & all my food is prepared by robots.

Smut Clyde said...

Also dining from a naked person's body.
Meret Oppenheim, 1959.

My monkey butler is scrupulously clean in the kitchen, except if he's been mixing himself a few banana dacquaries on the sly, in which case you don't want the special white sauce.

today I learned that there is a Chair Blog

Not only that; your table has its own MySpace page. You wouldn't believe the things it's been saying about you.

Big Bad Bald Bastard said...

I want that sensory-deprivation skull so I can experience past-life regression to the days when I was a shave-pated priest of Set in serpent-haunted Stygia.