Evgeny Antufiev, Hélène Bertin, Robert Brambora, Clémentine Bruno & Ruyin Nabizadeh, Beth Collar, Lucile Littot, Lindsey Mendick, Wobbe Micha, Ron Nagle, Anousha Payne, Paloma Proudfoot, Real Madrid & Kasia Fudakowski, Lukas Thaler and Tom Volkaert
Pictures by Aurélien Mole
VIrgiNiiaa? LIAneee? PaLooOmA?
The interrogation and the scathing voice of the police commissioner are getting farther and farther away. The names he invents for me appear and evaporate like clouds of smoke from the hookah of the caterpillar in Alice in Wonderland.
The letters collide with my sardonic little smile and make my impertinence ricochet back at his face, red with anger. This «red of the reds» that I wear on my cheeks like a trademark on my porcelain skin, and which resonates in the depths of his being, like the colour of his repressed desire.
He would like me to cry!
But heroic and continuous comedy, dear sir, it’s my job!
I suddenly feel almost sorry for this man who would delight in my crocodile tears;
then I remember that real feelings, for us, must not exist.
Poor guy! What does my real name matter? He knows he will let me go! Like every time.
I am beautiful.
And above all, I have lovers who possess billions. «Contacts» as we say in the industry.
He shouldn’t worry himself about it. To myself, it happens that I sometimes no longer know what my name is.
In their eyes, to their mouths, on their sexes, I remain an other.
After his infernal merry-go-round, I’m back on the boulevards.
I pass in front of the prisoners of Saint-Lazare prison. A woman with a white cap and a face swollen in the fashion of Princess de Lamballe is forcibly taken away by two hacks in uniform.
I tell myself that if I had a small pistol housed in my garter belt, I would put two bullets in the head of these guards, and release the condemned.
Then, perfectly selfish, I remember that I am a privileged person; that I am henceforth from “up there» and that my milk bath waits for me.
True feelings, in us, must not exist.
I insert the key, golden like a champagne cork, at 24 rue de Liège.
The familiar luxury of black marble reassures me.
I climb the few floors. I meet the neighbour with her little dog; the neighbour who reads tarot and talks to the dead. She tells me it’s time to come back to see her for a consultation. We haven’t finished the passage through my pre¬vious lives.
I look at myself in the mirror of the bathroom. A moth still awake observes me with big black eyes.
I try to catch it, it twirls a few moments and then crushes itself on the floor like an anvil. The magic powder of its wings, fallen from the air, appears as a shadow surrounding its body on the white tiling.
Maybe, like one of the lost kids of Neverland, it hadn’t felt like growing up.
I dip a toe in the scalding rosewater, and I untie a velvet ribbon from my hair.
With my head underwater, I think back to the tarot reader and her prediction of the future.
And I see myself canonised in statuettes and another porcelain sculptures, to which people would come, in their apartments, to pay homage to Aphrodite.
I would like flowers and locks of hair at my feet.
Lipstick kisses on my hands in the manner of an outraged Cy Twombly.
Or that one covers my breasts and buttocks in black latex from neighbourhood sex shops.
I am a rare pearl. I spent my life offering myself, so offer yourself to me in return.
Give me artworks !!!
And when you feel that little hot breath and that shiver in your neck when you penetrate my soul, don’t forget that real feelings, for us, must not exist.
But you will tell me… Ghosts do not exist either.
Translated by Aaron Ayscough