Shibari bondage frame made by Handrolld of McKinney, Texas. For a long time our friend Jahc has been trying to get us to come and do a performance at SWAMP in Bristol. A long time in this instance being believe it or not about 5 or 6 years. What with one thing and another the timing has never quite worked out. So it was good to finally be able to do it. We really wanted to give a boost to the rope bondage scene down there and show them a style of bondage they hadn't seen. Not just technique but the way that we interact and the kind of connection that can be achieved in shibari. We were late in the day when we drove down on Saturday and it's quite a long drive (about 160 miles each way) but the traffic and the roads were good and we made good time. Our hosts Jahc and vahine were kind enough to keep some dinner for us and we had a glass of wine and some excellent fish pie for dinner with some good conversation. We even managed to get to bed at a decent time as frankly everyone was pretty tired. We'd had an exhausting week so were glad to get a good night. Sunday dawned wet and windy but on the bright side it also had plenty of coffee and a hearty breakfast kindly provided by our hosts. Nothing like a good cooked breakfast to start a busy day off right. When the time came we pushed off to the SWAMP venue with all our bags of kit and our portable frame to get setup on their stage. Happily the frame fit [...]
This shoot had some good caning gagging, asphyxiation, penetration as well as some spectacular suspension bondage too! Adreena is always lovely to work with and a pleasure to tie.
Here's the long overdue second part to the blogging of the Viennese rope festival at long last. So after the great opening night and some wonderful shibari followed by some wonderful beer, there's more good stuff to come. In our case this includes some classes to teach, some time with good friends and another show before the festival proper is all over. Our class is on suspension transitions and I have to say that I was very pleased how seriously everyone who came took the class requirements. They were all capable of doing the class and that's a great relief to me. It isn't always the case that people have the ability to assess their skill level objectively. Particularly satisfying in a class like this is to help those who have troubles related to relative weight and strength, this applies in the main to female tops with male bottoms. It's really great to see them execute transitions that they previously thought impossible with the benefit of improved technique. One of the great joys of teaching for me is seeing a tangible improvement in someone's bondage and seeing the joy that brings. We hadn't planned on doing a second performance but well we did. This in a very industrial looking section of the old Ottakringer brewery. It was cavernous and wow that ceiling is high! Pre show memories include much of the unique Viennese lemonade (Almdudler), watching other shows and skipping through the venue hand in hand with Kamijoo Saki. We had a great night of shibari with friends. Finally the end of the festival for us included a wonderful night at the Vienna shibari dojo with all its organisers, the people who had come to [...]
We had what I can only describe as a very intense and emotional time performing at the first London Festival of Rope Art. It was a wonderful time with my love and we'd like to thank everyone who shared this time with us. Here is the first gallery of that show by Amaury Grisel.
I meant to blog about this event right after it happened and was frankly unforgivably lazy about blogging for the longest time. Now I've blogged about an event since the guilt pressure is finally high enough that I'm going to actually write this up. This was our first time in Vienna and our first time in Austria. Aside from the fact that we would get to see some of Vienna we were excited to see some friends for the first time in what seemed like ages. Wildties, Redsabbath, Saki Kamijoo and her model Mayumi Sumi. It's incredible to think that over the last couple of years we've met up with each other variously in London, Paris, Rome, Moscow, Chicago and now Vienna. It frankly is incredible to think that this kind of thing now seems so perfectly natural. As usual I'm going to have to take a moment to mention the people that organise events like this. I have to say that they very probably do a better job than I could and we were well looked after being collected from the airport and well informed about everything that was going on. I especially have to say thank you to those that spared their time to show us round some of their magnificent city. It's really spectacular. But before that the festival itself. We were really pleased to be asked to open the festivals shows and the venue was great being in a brewery in the city. The bar section where the opening was held was dark and filled with old blackened wood. It provided a great setting for the opening and a great atmosphere for the performance with the audience close around [...]
Une soirée de performance, sous le signe du semenawa, à la Place des Cordes avec Akira Naka & Gorgone.
This was an unexpected little trip for us but a really nice one. We were asked to perform in Paris with Naka Akira and Gorgone. at Place des Cordes which is a very nice rope dojo. We live 15 minutes from an Airport but in usual style appropriate flights to Paris weren't available so we first had to drive to Birmingham to catch a flight to Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport. The airport btw is a bit big and sprawling and it took a while to get to the appropriate customs, passport control and baggage. And then to find the exit and train. Once we'd found the right way it was only an hours journey on the train to catch a tube to get us close to the venue. Once there the first job was to get cleaned up from the unfortunate ordure of travelling. Sweaty and exhausting. It's a big of an unfortunate thing that though the flight to Paris is only about an hour, getting from your home to your destination can take over 8 hours of actual travel. Our first impresson of Place des Cordes was that it was a really good space and had a great feeling. The second was the huge grins that attend seeing Naka san again. Hugs, back slapping and greetings that make you realise how much you can miss people but also make you realise how many of your friends life far, far away. One friend there we hadn't seen in something like 4 years. It honestly didn't feel that long but when you look at it the time flies by. Not huge amounts to report on the afternoon that was left as most was spent on [...]
The after party performance night! I wanted to give this one a blog to itself as in the end it's a bit of a saga. To start with we'd had something like a total of 8 hours sleep over 3 days and frankly we felt like ass! I can't think of another way of describing it. We felt so bad that we had to say to DK (DallasKink) that we might not be able to do a show. We felt terrible, we looked worse, we had no music and hadn't any idea if we'd even make it through to the evening. We felt really bad for doing it but we were in truly terrible shape at that point. Five hour energy however is a thing and really helped out with a temporary boost. The more we thought about it the worse we felt. We really didn't want to let anyone down and for us we didn't want to let the event end on a flat note. So once we'd made it past the closing ceremony we went back to the room for showers and some preparation. I got a list of songs together and mailed them off. Then we just went to sleep for a couple of hours. I have to say it's amazing what even a couple of hours of sleep can do to revive you. We were ready in time and at the hotel when there was nearly another disaster. I had probably made a mistake about if we were getting a lift from the hotel. We were worried about time but then someone going to the party said that the shows didn't start till 11 and we relaxed a bit. This could [...]
In excellent news we'll be heading back up to Glasgow in 2015 to perform with Hajime Kinoko (一鬼のこ) at STORE's January event 'Twisted' It's going to be great to see Kinoko again and it's always a pleasure to see him perform. We're excited for this! Kinoko will also be teaching a two day intensive before the show night so if you are a rope enthusiast in Scotland you should definitely try to make it to that if you can. (Tickets) Check out Hajime Kinoko's stite here.
I don't even know where to begin with this blog. BED was a complete blast from start to finish. The people of Dallas were great to us and the people of BED especially. This event really has a special atmosphere and has won a special place in our hearts. I'd like to say right off that this event treats presenters better than any conference I've been to in the USA. The team really made an effort to make us welcome and at home. I can't tell you how much we appreciate this kind of effort. It really made a difference to our stay. Highlights of the event include our first show in 6 months. Dinners with friends and seeing people improve in classes. I honestly do love it when you see someone make real progress right there in a class and take away things that can help them improve for a long time to come. It's a cool thing and I never grow tired of it. My sincere thanks to everyone that came. Next of course seeing Kinoko Hajime san perform again for the first time in a couple of years. BED has a really personal atmosphere, while there's quite a few people there and you cannot of course spend a lot of time with everyone but many people became familiar and more familiar to us. When we left we were really aware that we were leaving friends behind. The after party! The after party at TheChurchDallas was an amazing blast. We really had a fun time performing. Thanks to everyone who came and gave such amazing reactions, you really contributed to the atmosphere and our own experience on stage. I can't tell you what it's like to [...]
From my personal blog on WykD.com I’ve been very lucky recently to get to work with some incredible people. Most recently it was a privilege and a pleasure to work with the American director and veteran of the Avant-garde Robert Wilson and with the model for one of Wilson’s video portraits, Lady Gaga who I had the pleasure of tying and suspending. The result of this I’m blown away to say is a portrait that is now hanging in every sense in the Louvre gallery in Paris as part of Robert Wilson’s Living Rooms installation. The installation will be at the Louvre till February 17, 2014 I had this opportunity only due to the kindness and good will of a very great friend. I consider myself very fortunate to have been a part of this and to have worked with so many great and talented people. On a more personal note... The Robert Wilson portrait of Lady Gaga now hanging in the Louvre. I pretty much can't believe this even now. Something I've worked on is right now hanging in the Louvre gallery in Paris. Just incredible. I could not have imagined such a thing even months ago. Earlier this year I worked on a feature film and saw its first showing at the Raindance festival. I have had the pleasure of working with a lot of extraordinary beautiful and surprising models. This one however was the Mother Monster of surprises! Here is Lady Gaga's own comment on her Little Monsters website. I got to work with some extraordinary people. My personal thanks to everyone for making me feel so welcome on location especially those that were kind to the rope guy trying to get [...]