lust

In the Beginning Was the Dildo

I’m the director of a zoo. My task: catching nuns. And in school, of all places. My long-term objective is a satisfying sexual climax. René Pollesch’s parlor game “Du hast mir die Pfanne versaut, du Spiegelei des Terrors!” (“You Ruined My Pan, You Fried Egg of Terror!”is about being the first to achieve orgasm– ahead of my rival players, who have gathered around one of the eight large tables set up in the Buchholz Gallery.

The Volksbühne has already put on this hybrid of play and interactive performance in 2009. In the same place where Pollesch presents his demented plays on a regular basis; the place where Christoph Schlingensief, the other enfant terrible of the theater scene, caused a sensation in the early ‘90s with his first productions.

At this year’s Venice Biennale, Schlingensief was represented posthumously in the German Pavilion. The debate as to whether or not the director should be considered an “artist” came to an abrupt end when Germany was awarded the Golden Lion for best national contribution.

A game of sexual overkill

And now on to Pollesch. At the Buchholz Gallery, elegantly dressed referees in tuxedos explain this game of sexual overkill. The maestro himself, acting as a kind of overseer, goes from table to table, keeping an eye on the proceedings. Dice are thrown and play money is exchanged. The players roam about in a “sex shop” and do some “streetwalking,” but it’s also possible to land in “church.” Whenever one of the participants lands on “Schnittchenkauf” (Buying Canapés), a real choir runs in, egged on by Christine Groß. 

“In the beginning was the dildo” is now heard throughout the gallery in four-part harmony. The chanted text is about a “countersexual revolution.” But it’s also about Pollesch’s new theater theory essay “Schnittchenkauf,” a saucy answer to Bertolt Brecht’s “Messingkauf” (Buying Brass). This text, which, incidentally, Pollesch will complete in installments up to the closing of the show in January, is also provided to visitors in the gallery after the glamorous opening event.

Last chance for the “Real Thing” on January 22

 

Visitors can rent a Kindle to study Pollesch’s statement – while roaming the remains of the opening night. Of course, that’s far less vivid than the proceedings at the well attended opening – even if Pollesch’s texts could never be boring. Still, it takes more creativity if you want to bring theater to the art world without losing something in translation.

The next opportunity to experience the real thing will be on January 22. At that time, you can once again have a seat at one of the gaming tables and try to “get a hot chocolate enema from your victim” – or other similarly exciting sexual practices – to the accompaniment of cheap commercial jingles. Bottoms up?!

  • René Pollesch“Der Dialog ist ein unverständlicher Klassiker” – Der Schnittchenkauf 2011-2012, Galerie Buchholz, December 16th 2011 – February 4th 2012, Tuesday – Saturday 11 – 6 pm.