Fans of art installations, chamber orchestras, wicked after-parties and the Icelandic singer, songwriter, composer, actress and record producer Björk are coming together on Saturday, Jan. 19, for the first-ever Björk Ball.
Insider spoke with Björk Ball co-organizer and Interstice member Trevor Decuir to get a slightly more concrete idea of what attendees can expect and to find out more about Interstice.
“Interstice is a collective of seven artists … and we are also a group of friends who have produced art together collaboratively and independently for almost a decade,” says Decuir.
Despite the longevity of friendship and collaboration, the collective hasn’t presented work publicly as a group, and they didn’t purposefully set out to change that. Instead, several of the artists happen to have studios at Art Sanctuary, which also serves as Orchestra Enigmatic’s rehearsal space.
Several times in the last few years, Orchestra Enigmatic has performed chamber music based on the works of people like Radiohead and Pink Floyd.
“We caught wind that they were going to be doing one of these concerts of Björk’s music. All of us in the group are super huge fans of Björk, so we just kind of decided in our fantasy world that we were going to throw their after-party,” explains Decuir.
Interstice reached out about a collaboration, and Orchestra Enigmatic was into it. So the artists began preparing for their group’s debut.
“It wasn’t really ever a thing we talked about leading up to this, it just kind of fell in our laps and we decided it’s time, this is what we are going to do,” says Decuir.
The members of Interstice began tossing around ideas — big ideas — ideas that reflect their love of Björk.
“It’s not just the music but also the art and fashion component of who she is an artist,” says Decuir.
Those ideas, like Björk’s music, were grand and strange.
“In the beginning, it was just spitballing. But in boulder-sized spitballs,” he says. “Like, what’s the biggest craziest thing we could do?”
Though the group eventually had to start considering what they could make happen in the real world, their concepts remained pretty large, and Saturday’s event will stretch throughout Art Sanctuary.
“Once we really started to get into the visual projects, we realized we were all creating different little worlds,” he adds.
But Decuir says it’s hard to say exactly what kinds of little worlds.
“I live in textiles — that’s where I started with what I’m working on,” he says. “But I’ve pushed myself to go outside of what I normally do.”
Among some other collaborations for Saturday night, Decuir is creating large fabric trees that hang from the ceiling, and he’s populated some areas of Art Sanctuary with paper moths.
“Creating this alien flora landscape, there’s elements of weaving and Bargello quilting — which is a really neat, advanced technique in quilting — and there’s also found object sculptures in that area. I’m also working on a water sculpture.”
With Interstice involved, Orchestra Enigmatic’s concert started to grow. DJs and drag queens joined the bill, including DJ AndrOspore, who also creates art with Interstice. Part of his work for Saturday night will adorn the stage.
“(DJ AndrOspore is) going for that very primal feeling that a lot of Björk’s music had about eight to 10 years years ago,” says Decuir. “It was very raw and visceral and volcanic in nature. Very explosive. So that’s reflected in set pieces and also video projections that he’s weaving together to go with the music.”
Creating these volcanic sights and little worlds isn’t just Interstice going big, it’s also about cutting Art Sanctuary down to size so it will fit with what the group believes are the deeply personal relationships fans have with Björk’s music.
“(Art Sanctuary) is its own beast for an event … the ceilings are so tall and the room is so big, so we wanted to partition that off into these different environments, so people could feel like they were still in an intimate setting,” says Decuir.
Get a glimpse of these little worlds and hear Orchestra Enigmatic interpret Björk’s music on Saturday, Jan. 19. There will be additional performances by In Lightning, Chicago-based DJ Sassmouth, and Stevie Dicks. Come in costume to compete for prizes, and bring your dancing shoes.
The event runs from 7:30 to 10 p.m. Tickets are $15 in advance or $18 at the door. Art Sanctuary is located at 1433 S. Shelby St.