Category Archives: Excess

Let them eat kuchen

So after I posted a couple of days ago about Ludwig II I remembered I had some photos kicking around somewhere of the palace Herrenchiemsee and its surrounds which I visited almost 10 years ago. Situated between Munich and Salzburg,

Let them eat kuchen

So after I posted a couple of days ago about Ludwig II I remembered I had some photos kicking around somewhere of the palace Herrenchiemsee and its surrounds which I visited almost 10 years ago. Situated between Munich and Salzburg,

Goddess of the night

Anita Berber was hardcore. How hardcore? Leni Riefenstahl was her understudy. In a period when Berlin was rethinking art, politics and life itself, Berber was going further than anyone else, blurring the line between life and performance, setting new standards for scandal and audacity.

Goddess of the night

Anita Berber was hardcore. How hardcore? Leni Riefenstahl was her understudy. In a period when Berlin was rethinking art, politics and life itself, Berber was going further than anyone else, blurring the line between life and performance, setting new standards for scandal and audacity.

Useless. Insignificant. Poetic.

W. C. Fields, Anthony Quinn, Errol Flynn, John Barrymore, Vincent Price, John Decker. The last-mentioned of that group is the one you’re least likely to recognise, but he’s not just the only non-actor, he is probably the most interesting of all.

Useless. Insignificant. Poetic.

W. C. Fields, Anthony Quinn, Errol Flynn, John Barrymore, Vincent Price, John Decker. The last-mentioned of that group is the one you’re least likely to recognise, but he’s not just the only non-actor, he is probably the most interesting of all.

“Scholar, connoisseur, drunkard, poet, pervert…”

The count’s bedroom featured a pentagram over the bed, and there he would smoke opium and play piano late into the night, emerging the next day – late, naturally – in a dressing gown with a snake wrapped around his neck.

“Scholar, connoisseur, drunkard, poet, pervert…”

The count’s bedroom featured a pentagram over the bed, and there he would smoke opium and play piano late into the night, emerging the next day – late, naturally – in a dressing gown with a snake wrapped around his neck.

Marquess Casati

This vision, dressed in something George Clinton might have rejected as being a little OTT, would be amazing enough if it had stepped out of a 1970s rock opera, or a disco fantasia about a mission to Mars manned exclusively by Village People.

Marquess Casati

This vision, dressed in something George Clinton might have rejected as being a little OTT, would be amazing enough if it had stepped out of a 1970s rock opera, or a disco fantasia about a mission to Mars manned exclusively by Village People.

Huncke burning love

While he associated with William Burroughs, Allen Ginsberg and Gregory Corso, Herbert Huncke’s natural milieu was drug dealers and prostitutes with names like Japanese Rose, Louie the Lip and Crazy Ozzie.

Huncke burning love

While he associated with William Burroughs, Allen Ginsberg and Gregory Corso, Herbert Huncke’s natural milieu was drug dealers and prostitutes with names like Japanese Rose, Louie the Lip and Crazy Ozzie.

Vaché’s epiphany

It’s unclear if death was the destination when Jacques Vaché took to a Nantes hotel room to smoke and ingest opium in 1919 with four companions (one of whom also died). Certainly Vaché’s disdainful detachment from everyone and everything made self-destruction a plausible possibility

Vaché’s epiphany

It’s unclear if death was the destination when Jacques Vaché took to a Nantes hotel room to smoke and ingest opium in 1919 with four companions (one of whom also died). Certainly Vaché’s disdainful detachment from everyone and everything made self-destruction a plausible possibility

XIIDX day 6: down and out in Paris

The life of Dadaist poet Jacques Rigaut, as well as his death (which we’ve already talked about) inspired Pierre Drieu La Rochelle’s 1931 novel Le feu follet (“The Fire Within”) which Louis Malle filmed in 1963.

XIIDX day 6: down and out in Paris

The life of Dadaist poet Jacques Rigaut, as well as his death (which we’ve already talked about) inspired Pierre Drieu La Rochelle’s 1931 novel Le feu follet (“The Fire Within”) which Louis Malle filmed in 1963.

The last jetsetter

What Dado Ruspoli actually did, apart from live fabulously, is difficult to say. He had a handful of small acting roles, including a part in The Godfather Part III, he was a generous patron of performers and artists who captured his imagination, but as for a “real” job, he claimed he “never had time”.

The last jetsetter

What Dado Ruspoli actually did, apart from live fabulously, is difficult to say. He had a handful of small acting roles, including a part in The Godfather Part III, he was a generous patron of performers and artists who captured his imagination, but as for a “real” job, he claimed he “never had time”.

Dress-down Friday: Felix Yusupov

Felix Yusupov was a Russian prince from a stupendously wealthy family, best remembered for his role in the 1916 assassination of Rasputin.

Dress-down Friday: Felix Yusupov

Felix Yusupov was a Russian prince from a stupendously wealthy family, best remembered for his role in the 1916 assassination of Rasputin.

Ravaged angel

Annemarie Schwarzenbach pursued a Tintin-esque existence from the nightclubs of Weimar Berlin to the treacherous shadows of Stalin’s Moscow, from occupied Eritrea to America’s segregated South.

Ravaged angel

Annemarie Schwarzenbach pursued a Tintin-esque existence from the nightclubs of Weimar Berlin to the treacherous shadows of Stalin’s Moscow, from occupied Eritrea to America’s segregated South.

Last round

Born Jacques d’Adelswärd to minor nobility and a major fortune, he later added the second barrel to his name in honour of his ancestor, the Swedish adventurer Count Fersen who was a favourite — and possibly lover — of Marie Antoinette.

Last round

Born Jacques d’Adelswärd to minor nobility and a major fortune, he later added the second barrel to his name in honour of his ancestor, the Swedish adventurer Count Fersen who was a favourite — and possibly lover — of Marie Antoinette.

At home with Alfred Jarry

Jarry has few equals in the field of literary eccentrics. The bizarre, grotesque lead character of his play Ubu Roi was not just his most revolutionary creation, it was the inspiration for his own persona.

At home with Alfred Jarry

Jarry has few equals in the field of literary eccentrics. The bizarre, grotesque lead character of his play Ubu Roi was not just his most revolutionary creation, it was the inspiration for his own persona.