I love this quote. It brings to mind one of my favourite books, ‘The Master and Margarita’, which is a surreal escapade that questions what happens if you try to repress truth, the value of love beyond the material and the folly of the establishment to try and control how people think and feel. A main theme of the plot is that Margarita is invited to Satan’s Midnight Ball. This ball was partly a satirical take on the historical event ‘The Spring Festival Ball’ which was put on in 1934 by the American Embassy with the instruction by the American Ambassador to be the greatest embassy ball Moscow had ever seen. A number of dignitaries were present although Stalin himself was not.
The American Ambassador had chandeliers, tulips and a menagerie of animals on loan from Moscow Zoo, including a bear that got drunk on Champagne. What struck me about this, and the surreal party in the book, is the desire to create a party for the senses. Whilst life has many meanings for many people Hedonism as a concept has been philosophized about since the days of ancient Egypt. It seems the desire to stimulate all the senses through hedonistic pursuits has existed for as long as we have been recording thoughts in writing.
There are still many parties today taking inspiration from this, creating multi-sensory environments designed to take a party beyond the socialising aspect into the experiential.
So if you want a party that tickles and attacks your senses the best places we can think of to do this are Burning Man, The Last Tuesday Society, Torture Garden and Killing Kittens.
The Last Tuesday Society to us, seems to take its inspiration directly from The Master and Margarita, with a petting menagerie complete with reptile and a hairy Tarantula, naked gold paint covered waiters, life drawing, old fashioned dancing music and sometimes hot tubs, it really is aiming to indulge all your senses in a hedonistic orgy.
Burning Man originally created to mark the Summer Solstice by a small group of friends, has grown into a gathering of thousands. It describes itself as ‘a temporary metropolis dedicated to community, art, self-expression, and self-reliance. In this crucible of creativity, all are welcome’. If you didn't get to experience the 60s love-in this is what it might have looked like if you crossed it with Mad Max and sent it to the future.
Torture Garden, is billed as a fetish club, but is so much more. Based out of London but puts on events in many major cities, it is a multi-sensory space based on the darker sides of eroticism and dressing up. Oculolinctus anyone ;)
Killing Kittens is a play party based around giving women the space to explore their sexuality and is a hedonistic playground of Champagne, oysters, lesbian fantasies and orgies. The venues vary and are only released the day before making the anticipation all the more palpable.
I am sure this is a less highbrow version of Nietzsche’s quote ‘Good girls go to Heaven, bad girls go everywhere’ so if you fancy partaking in these fantastical parties whatever you do have fun!