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Črna Mačka

The concept was to create a midweek event for alternative party-goers. The name was taken from the cult Paris cabaret venue "Le Chat Noir" - The Black cat. This venue used to be a hang-out place for all sorts of creatives and intellectuals to have fun and socialize and this was the kind of atmosphere we wanted to communicate through the event's visual identity. The Black Cat is also one of the symbols of anarchism and though we didn't want to get too political, it was a symbolic invitation for people inclined to critical thinking and anti-consumerism in general. The texts which accompanied these also included hints of a political attitude though it was always tongue-in-cheek so as not to exclude different-thinking individuals or to suggest any sort of indoctrination.


Project details

Author(s):Jakob Bekš



70 euro

How does project benefit the client (if there is a client)?
Again, I was my own client in a way because I also organized and played at these events. I've always been interested in the communicative potential of "parties" and how events, primarily organized for people to let loose and have fun, could also stimulate new ways of thinking or intellectual debates. Obviously you can not press people into these activities, but we tried to make the context (using accompanying texts, visuals etc.) of the event stimulative for conversation and exchange of views and opinions regarding different topics, from popular culture to radical politics.

How does project benefit the people you are speaking to with your communication?
Because this particular series of events sprang from nights organized by students of the Department of Design at the Academy of Fine Arts, the "academic" student clientele were the first "regular" guests at these evenings. Even though it was open for anyone, the majority of visitors at the first parties was the "old crowd", which was very perceptive and could decipher the concepts behind events like "Big Brother" which featured visuals filmed inside the club itself streaming on the big screen behind the DJ. It was dubbed "the most real reality show ever" and the people at the club loved the concept of giving everyone their chance to "shine" in this "reality show". This proved to be a great success, involving the crowd to participate in the show and in a way create their own clubbing experience. The "Črna Mačka" nights continued this mission, although budget constraints and some less-than-favorable outcomes forced us to abandon more challenging concepts.

How does project benefit the wider society?
The events were intended to present new approaches to clubbing and the "club experience" while exploring the possibilites for stimulating communication and involving the people. It is the people, in the end, who make the party and in a way, we wanted to give them the means to do it on their own terms. The effectivity of this concept was very variable, probably also due to the fickle nature of midweek event turnouts because in order for some of these concepts to take flight, you need a certain number of people involved to get the ball rolling. I wouldn't say the concept was a success, but considering its experimental nature we had some good turnouts and some successful results involving the crowd. So even if there aren't many obvious benefits for the wider society, it did provide (if only for two short seasons) a clubbing experience that was a bit different and thought-provoking compared to your usual mainstream club experience.

How did/does this project benefit author (authors/makers of the project)?
Well, I got to have fun with the flyers and play to some amazing crowds, but most of all it provided a platform to try different stuff out that could be too "risky" or "quirky" for the weekend parties (which are the revenue-generators for the club). I enjoyed coming up with fun (and sometimes just plain stupid) concepts and trying them out without fear of financial reprimands if the night wouldn't go according to plan. So I guess my benefit was (at least percieved) artistic freedom :)

Tell us something about your view on communication. What is your / your organisation's / initiative's (visual) communication philosophy?
Form, function, response-ability. :)

What about the process of creating this work? Please describe it.
I sketched out the logo for this event series in Barcelona, while reading about the cult cabaret "Chat Noir". The cat silhouette is obviously inspired by the original 19th century poster as is the hand-drawn type. It ended up being the defining element for the event, just as the Steinlen poster became the defining visual element associated with the original "Black Cat".

Other projects by the author
Spunk on Toast gig poster
Scientology vol.2