A poetic night in nocturnal Raval

First of all I wish to apologise for the delay in writing this. My last show, the second solo show overall but the first one since operating under the moniker Illusion of Purity, was about two weeks ago. I wanted to write a short message, a thankyou to those that attended the show, but I fell ill with antibiotics on the shelf shortly after and then had a technical issue with my computer. A moment of bad luck rarely is an isolated event, isn’t it?

With a bit of a delay I wish to look back on the poetry session of two weeks ago. The Raval remains one of my favourite barrios of Barcelona. The small little alleys, the labyrinth of little streets with squats, old housing and bohemian bars, have something poetic by themselves. Especially at night, when the alternative vibe really is noticeable. I also love the cosmopolitan feeling of the barrio, where people of all cultures and all backgrounds are represented. It has something artistic for sure, and I couldn’t wish for a better decor for the first show under the moniker Illusion of Purity. Not to forget mentioning too that the venue itself also was highly artistic, with its decoration that holds a perfect balance between bizarre and artsy.

The show marked the first official show under the Illusion of Purity moniker, and also the presentation of my latest booklet of poems, which were read in front of a crowd for the first time. The first part of the show, which lasted about 2 hours alltogether and finished well past mid-night, was mainly dedicated to those new poems. Afterwards I read a selection of the poems I like most from my earlier booklets. I think I can be satisfied with the artistic output, although while reading I did notice that the number of melancholic and gloomy poems outnumber the others. Seems I find myself in creative moods mainly when I have feelings of frustration, sadness and anxiety to get out of my system. I hope that everyone realises the purpose of this project: not making people feel depressed, but give them insight in what it is like to live with (amongst other psychological problems) depression. From the chats with the crowd after the show finished, I do feel that this message was clear to all. The minority of political poems formed a nice distraction from the sad and melancholic poems, and there were some hopeful ones present too. I deliberately ended with the quite positive “Tomorrow on my Side” rather than reading it somewhere halfway the performance. By ending the show with that one, I hope that the message to never lose hope came across too.

The crowd was small in numbers, but those that were there –I feel– really grasped the contents. That to me is much more important than the number of people present. So overall, the night was satisfying.

So where is Illusion of Purity going to next?

Well, first of all, a few poems for the next booklet are in the pipeline, and ideas (drafts that need a lot of editing) for some more are there too. So we work on new material. Meanwhile the promotion of the existing material continues. At least two new shows are a 90% certainty and I hope to confirm the dates on this site very soon. I meanwhile continuously look for new opportunities to perform in as many different venues as I can. Keep an eye on the site, I hope to add plenty of new dates soon. One new date is already scheduled but this concerns a speech and is not a public event. I hope to get some public readings announced very soon.

Secondly, the site is still developping, and I am working on making the decor for the future shows more interesting. The first show we already saw some famous quotes and some images and paintings portrayed on the background, and I want to further develop this. Only one rule counts: it has to have a meaning, no decorations just for the sake of it.

Thanks to all that were there at the poetry reading two weeks ago. And to all supporting this project: keep an eye on the site for more news soon.

Peace to all.

About illusionofpurity

I am the founding member and only permanent member of the Illusion of Purity project. The project deals with life with psychological problems such as autism, manic depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, anxiety disorder, ... and tries to use art to break the taboo about these disorders. Too many people suffer in silence because of the taboo and the many wrong stereotypes. Using art and speeches as a weapon against these taboos and stereotypes, this project aims to raise awareness about the true life with psychological problems. Additionally, a more philosophical and political undertone may appear throughout the project, although the main focus is mental health and the surrounding taboos. I myself have Asperger Syndrome, OCD/anxiety disorder and suffer from unipolar depression. Activism at this moment consists of mainly (but not solely) speeches and poetry. This may increase to include other activities in the future too. The project is based in Spain at the moment, my personal origins lie in Belgium.
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