...and HAIR and HAIR and HAIR and...Hair has always held a special fascination. It is viewed as an expression of one’s personality, as the seat of the soul. In the Rhineland in the 19th century, when a man and woman were betrothed, the woman would start collecting strands of hair from her brushes and combs. She would then weave them into a bracelet for her beloved as a sign of the bond between them. Such bracelets – the tokens and physical legacy of a connection between two people that extinguished long ago – can still be seen in local museums.
Hair is also regarded as a symbol of sexual potency, power and vitality. Even today, the heads of prisoners and the condemned are often shaved to rob them symbolically of their individuality.
Moreover, hair still remains a commodity. Nowadays, that is particularly true in countries where poverty is rampant. There, hair is often the only possession of any worth and is prized for its commercial value.
Many men and women sacrifice their hair for religious reasons – but even this hair usually ends up being traded internationally. The material for real-hair wigs mainly originates in poorer countries in Asia; it is then bleached and dyed. Hair is thus both the object and the product of a global industry.
… and HAIR and HAIR and HAIR and … was created at two special locations: in the lobby of the “Halle Kalk” museum in the Cologne suburb of Kalk, a former production hall of the industrial engineering company KHD, and in an empty villa once used as a sickbay for KHD. The project plays upon the contrasting atmospheres of the two sites: public vs. private, exposed vs. concealed, robust vs. fragile. The interplay of performance art and spatial installations creates a surreal landscape of images, words and sounds that enables and compels each onlooker to find his or her own individual standpoint.
text: Lothar Kittstein
world premiere 2006 - Cologne, Villa Kalk and Museumshalle Kalk
A production of Schauspiel Köln in cooperation with Angie Hiesl Produktion.
Marc Günther (director Schauspiel Köln), all departments of the theatre, the performers, Konrad Knieling and to all people who helped to realise …and HAIR and HAIR and HAIR and… .