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Dizzyland – exercice de style

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Fuck! Our TV says “Qrrrrk”. That nicest of all second-hand TV sets which has provided good services for years. As we are wondering whether we’re true intellectuals who don’t give a shit about TV, or fresh lovers who won’t need any TV to the end of their days, or whether we’re in fact media geeks who cannot do without for even one day, we spend all of that Saturday in media shops trying to decide whether we’ll buy the TV of our life or prefer to spend the money on a holiday in Italy, or plane tickets to Berlin to visit the Biennale that has just opened the night before. By the time the latest shops are closing, we find ourselves with a brand-new 120 cm Panasonic plasma TV on our hands, which we somehow fit into the not-so-small trunk of our deep granite Citroën Picasso. Getting that thing heaved into our apartment without laying it down is hard work. Installing it eats up a chunk of the evening. Rather late to go to the Restaurant. From the list of parties we have invitations for, the Dizzyland video awards are somewhat promising: art, competition, glamour, the cream of the crop, winners and losers, the latest gossip, in a word, fun and spectacle.

On the highway from Zurich to Aargau it looks like we’ll be missing most of the official part. So what! For sure tons of people will stick around for the post-award party. The stylized map on the invitation first sends us off in the wrong direction. Parking eats up another 15 minutes. Arriving on the scene of the crime, fuck, half the canton is standing in line to get in. Style: village disco. Age group: no more than 15. My goodness, darling, what have we embarked on. Briefly, we consider getting right back to the car. No. We bypass the line and make for the main entrance. Peaking in through the door we catch a glimpse of a guy in complete contrast with the teens. Despite the suit, it’s not one of the bodyguards, either. Hey! That’s Oliver! We enter. The master of ceremonies looks splendid tonight. As fresh and kind as always. Nonetheless special tonight, with an elegant cashmere retro style suit in the line of this season, with perky pink lining, in contrast with the bold explosion of jungle floral motives in several nuances of green on his shirt. So fantasy.

As a good host, despite the humming hive around us, in two sentences he has introduced us to the situation. We know who has taken first, second, third prize, and the audience prize. Just minutes ago, the winning film has been screened once more, the prizes handed over, last drinks drunk, gossips exchanged, and the art scene has gone home. With the exception of a few colleagues who have taken refuge in the canteen, wave after wave of young and younger guys and gals stream by us and into the disco room, too dizzy to have a clue about Dizzyland.

For the first time we spend more time with Pascal. Interesting guy. He introduces us to the secrets of good wines. In the meantime, Oliver is busy with two ladies who look very important. From Pascal we understand that they see them once a year. And that they’ve taken on weight. Like last year. And the year before. Talk about people growing with their careers. After he sends off the ladies, we have the pleasure of Oliver’s company at the table. The end of the evening with Oliver and Pascal is very pleasant, indulging in our common penchant for good red wine. We truly enjoyed this dizzy night.

The last train to Zurich has left. They consider a taxi. We offer a ride and leave them in front of the postmodern minimalist building where they live. In return, Oliver promises he’ll cook for us. He’s a good cook! And what a collection of red wines! (Oliver, we haven’t forgotten!)

At home, we pour ourselves a small Glenkinchie each, slide the Dizzyland DVD into the player, and enjoy our new wide-screen TV!

Folks, wanna read more? Wanna know what the films are like? <>

This article was originally published in WeAreTheArtists No. 7 (May-July 2006).