As nobody showed any interest in buying the ship that the judge had put for sale, we opened, with the Russian theatre director Leonid Vlassov, the ship’s hold as an all-night cabaret, theatre and music stage. This again flourished extremely well, since at that time the KNSM-Java-island was populated by squatters, artists, skippers and nomads while the vodka was delivered at bottom prices by passing Russian sailors. The fine fleur of Amsterdam performing artists passed by the ship’s hold.


The new course of the ship became suddenly clear when South-African artist Robbie Baars proposed to organise a textile parade on the quay under the name “The Ship of Fools”. Bingo! This course would be Germany in 1994, to celebrate the quincentenary of the first bestseller in history, “Das Narrenschyff” (The Ship of Fools), printed in 1494. Indeed, that year Azart would provide the only artistic contribution to this celebration in the whole of Germany. Indeed, this would provide the money to send the singing lawyer back to hell. Indeed, Fools are free – and not that expensive as opera singers! And indeed, Robbie Baars proved to be a worthy Fool staying on board for more then 15 years.


The show must go on! To discourage any prospective buyer and so to secure the continuity of the Chance and Crash Meeting Point we invited as new crew members Max and Moritz, two piglets, to shit all over the deck. They performed brilliantly. But despite the explicit promises of the seller, these piglets, well fed by the leftovers of the squat restaurant The End of The World, grew into huge monsters. Their caretaker was the Ulster sailor boy David O’Sullivan who turned himself instantly into a vegetarian when we presented him in Germany with a tin of canned sausages labelled Max und Moritz. Anyhow, crows, pigs and donkeys are the natural crew members of the Ship of Fools. That year Robin Cooke, co-founder of Mutoid Waste, parked his fire canon truck in front of the ship. He was about to emigrate to Australia in companion of a container stuffed with about 25 dismembered diesel and MIG-motors to roam the roads and to construct a sculpture park. We gladly accepted his invitation to have the ship cross the Australian desert – on condition to be put back in the ocean. This project however, for the lack of fuel, had to be abandoned.

The ship’s hold as a midnight cabaret, theatre and music stage


The ship’s hold as seen by Maribell Bacardit


Russian Homeport on a Boy’s Dream and Coffin
Amsterdam. Volkskrant, 28-04-1992

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