Famous clubs have offered masters the perfect programme to design fantasy environs, says Chris Hall
Caligula hurling “states parties ” ,” was how the funk musician Rick James described the legendary Studio 54 in New York, which opened in 1977. There was a cocaine snorting” Man and the Spoon” facet that would sink from the ceiling when required, there were heaps of cash in the back area, unisex bathrooms and stunts like Bianca Jagger travelling a horse on the dancefloor led by a naked person covered in amber glitter.
The key act about Studio 54, which features in a new exhibit about world-wide fraternity culture at Vitra Design Museum, was its adaptability. It could become a different fantasy home to act as backdrop for the outrageous attires and theatre of the party goers- such as when four tonnes of glint were stopped from the club’s ceiling on New Year’s Eve or when the clothes designer Valentino had a circus-themed birthday defendant with sand and mermaids on trapezes.
” The 60 s and 70 s considered the increases of the idea that you don’t design a nightclub, you return the negligible intend points to make a nightclub ,” says Catharine Rossi, a blueprint historian at Kingston University, who has co-curated the exhibition.” What’s important is not the physical room- genuinely the nightclub is just a container. Clubs are induced through lighting and sound, psychotropic drugs and parties .”
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