Kamis, 04 September 2014

Brisbane*s naked disco has art lovers dancing (ABC)

The entrance to Brisbane s first naked disco in Fortitude Valley. The disco is part of the Club Purple exhibition.ABC The entrance to Brisbane's first naked disco in Fortitude Valley. The disco is part of the Club Purple exhibition.

A new exhibition is encouraging Queenslanders to dance naked, all in the name of art.

Club Purple is part of Kraft, an exhibition by Australian artist Stuart Ringholt at the Institute of Modern Art (IMA) in Brisbane, and includes a gallery space dedicated to a naked discothèque.

The disco is equipped with a jukebox hosting more than 5,000 songs, strobe lights and sound system.

IMA co-director Aileen Burns told 612 ABC Brisbane's Kelly Higgins-Devine that the exhibition encourages people to feel free.

"The disco is for everyone. Everyone is equally exposed in this scenario and it's about being free rather than it being Friday night and looking hot," she said.

"There's security in place and there's no way to see in or to see anything happening when dancing is going on.

"You can go dancing with friends or ... solo."

Fellow co-director Johan Lundh says participants must be totally naked.

"People must be nude, no socks are allowed. There's purple carpet and it's all climate controlled, so it's not too hot and not too cold," he explained.

"We have a bouncer outside and everyone must sign a waiver, so not everyone can get in.

"You have to be over 18 and be there to dance, you're not allowed to just stand and watch.

"You go into a dressing room, undress, put your valuables in a locked safe and then shake loose."

Club Purple is a co-production with Monash University in Melbourne, where senior management, including the curator, opened the exhibition by dancing naked together.

Mr Lundh says the same didn't happen in Brisbane.

"We had the feeling that that was a little too brave, we didn't do that," he said.

"There's something you don't want to know about your co-workers," he added.

"Half of our staff have done it so far as solo dancers and we will do it before the end of the exhibition."

Confronting emotions through art

Artist Stuart Ringholt included the disco in his Kraft project to provide an interactive component to the exhibition.

Mr Ringholt has previously held nude gallery openings and exhibitions throughout Australia.

Ms Burns says his work can be confronting.

"Stuart's big reason for making art is to confront emotions and feelings in the world that we wouldn't normally [confront]," she said.

"This particular work is about embarassment. It's not just about getting embarrassed by dancing, but coming to terms with whether or not you're the kind of person who goes for it."

So far, the exhibition has attracted more than 100 people a day, with only a handful choosing to take part in the disco part of the project.

Mr Lundh says the people that do take part find it exhilarating.

"The entire work addresses anxiety and embarassment, even fear. The disco is a cathartic thing," he said.

"Everyone who tries it comes out feeling proud and free. You let go of all those feelings in the disco."

_The exhibition is currently open at the Institute of Modern Art at the Judith Wright Centre in Fortitude Valley, Brisbane._


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