October 31, 2017

The Sacred Conspiracy

Filed under: acéphale,Georges Bataille — ABRAXAS @ 2:16 pm


August 2, 2017

Jeffrey Babcock on the abyss

Filed under: 2016 - abyss,acéphale — ABRAXAS @ 12:31 pm

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February 26, 2015


Filed under: acéphale — ABRAXAS @ 3:20 pm


December 15, 2014

the group of 13

Filed under: acéphale,corpses — ABRAXAS @ 4:35 pm


May 12, 2014

kaganof with jeffrey babcock (acéphale)

Filed under: acéphale,just good friends — ABRAXAS @ 8:32 am


April 28, 2014

acéphale, amsterdam 1997

Filed under: acéphale — ABRAXAS @ 3:49 pm


April 25, 2014

aryan kaganof and jeffrey babcock outside the anne frank museum, amsterdam 1998

Filed under: acéphale,just good friends — ABRAXAS @ 4:55 pm


December 11, 2013

with jeffrey babcock, amsterdam 30 november 2013

Filed under: acéphale,just good friends,stephanus muller — ABRAXAS @ 11:12 pm

Screen shot 2014-02-02 at 11.07.33 AM

December 9, 2013

jeffrey babcock, cafe krom, amsterdam saturday 30 november 2013

Filed under: acéphale,kagaportraits — ABRAXAS @ 11:19 am


October 26, 2013


Filed under: acéphale — ABRAXAS @ 6:20 pm


October 14, 2013

gabi, 21 december 1996

Filed under: acéphale,just good friends — ABRAXAS @ 10:36 am


October 7, 2013

amsterdam 20 september 1998

Filed under: acéphale,just good friends — ABRAXAS @ 5:12 am


October 5, 2013

amsterdam 8 february 1997

Filed under: acéphale,just good friends — ABRAXAS @ 12:31 pm


amsterdam, 8 february 1997

Filed under: acéphale,just good friends — ABRAXAS @ 12:20 pm


September 22, 2013

the headless men

Filed under: acéphale — ABRAXAS @ 9:22 pm

Acèphale is an artistic cell of solo and group performances involving various members. It has performed internationally in such countries as the United States, Germany, Italy, Holland, Mongolia and Japan.

Acèphale takes its name from the clandestine cult organization formed by Georges Bataille in 1938. Its present reincarnation was intuited by Sir Djeffery Babcock and Aryan Kaganof in 1994. Since that time it has produced a wide range of artistic projects including films, concerts, books, interviews and experimental theatre pieces.

In all of its endeavours it incorporates a similar system of creation. It has developed a structure of intersections which give rise to the definition and direction of a given moment. Therefore it always takes connections from outside of the artistic sphere, in order to influence its creativity. This procedure takes Acèphale away from most current artistic trends and places it closer to the mystical sciences. Acèphale accepts this banishment gladly since in its estimation most modern art has succumbed to middle class gallery aesthetics. This seems to be more of a marketing ploy, rather than an intensely creative impulse.

In respect to the original Acèphale group, it must be said that we have a predilection for the more severe and tender dimensions of creativity. Our methods, whether poetic or political, will always have more affinities with Artaud, Bellmer, or the Viennese actionists, rather than the pop aesthetics of, for example, Andy Warhol.

Acèphale believes that in order for the spirit to rise, creativity must be re-grounded. It attempts to fertilize that ground through a range of transgressive acts manifested in literature, cinema and live performances. It is especially when all three of these primal elements are harnessed together that Acèphale feels that a true field of discovery is penetrated.

In these acts of extremity they aim to loosen the moorings beneath the surface of existence, so that all that is suppressed can flood once again into the physical realm. In this way it is important to note that Acèphale doesn’t believe in transcendence as a solution, but rather in the infusion of magic into the physical.

June 14 2002

May 1, 2013

der gespenstische souveran

Filed under: acéphale,kagagallery — ABRAXAS @ 10:13 am


February 12, 2013

acephale’s first performance / the reserection

Filed under: acéphale,kaganof short films — ABRAXAS @ 11:12 pm


you can order this dvd from the african noise foundation, p.o. box 15322, vlaeberg 8018, cape town, south africa

November 22, 2012

the corpse-grinders of berlin – episode 12

Filed under: acéphale — ABRAXAS @ 10:45 am

He wouldn’t really miss his room. The wooden floor, the torn flowered wallpaper, the dusty windows. They were intermixed with too much pain. It was strange how objects contained a certain potential of pain through association and memory.

Memories. Some memories stalk you endlessly until the time you are able to understand how to disarm them. If you didn’t learn how they work they would ruthlessly finish you off. He had seen quite a few sink under the force of memories. The only other option, of course, was to become an amnesiac.
He had witnessed a whole generation of amnesiacs develop, not just in terms of actual memories, but also in the realm of feelings. Feeling-amnesiacs, the product, seemingly, of a psychotic, fearful world which had no idea how to really handle its existence except through this emotional form of amputation.
Perhaps amnesia is necessary to deal with the tremendous guilt of this faithless civilization.

Here in this room in Berlin he had suffered incredibly. A trauma as intense as birth. He had trembled uncontrollably, he had beaten his fists against the plaster walls. He had awoke suddenly in the middle of the nights from nauseating nightmares, only to discover that they were not nightmares, that it was all true.

Let’s take a moment to digress from this so-called narrative and meditate a bit about our main character.


First meditation

This guy is the asshole of the entire society he exists in, and he realises it. He is living for nothing, as we have said, since everything he values (nobility, romance, poetry) has become an irritation to the eyes of culture. He is lost to the intentions and means of this world.

A man of ceremony in a world without either ritual nor style.
This is a man caught in Europa during the floods.
Everything under the United Shits of Benetton.

When he didn’t care about mobile phones or how to use computers, people called him an extremist. But he said that there were enough people using those things already, that someone had to balance things out. He believed in open possibilities, not in trampling over one style with a new one. There had to be some people who didn’t move with the rest, who kept other ways alive.

He had always been alienated from mass-phenomenon anyway. All the masses knew how to do was trample, even when they did it softly as they do these days.

April 18, 2012


Filed under: acéphale — ABRAXAS @ 8:01 pm

first published here: http://whysocurious.net/acephale/

February 29, 2012

on enchantment

Filed under: acéphale,Georges Bataille,literature — ABRAXAS @ 3:52 pm

“The road to the kingdom of childhood, governed by ingenuousness and innocence, is thus regained in the horror of atonement. The purity of love is regained in its intimate truth which, as I said, is that of death. Death and the instant of divine intoxication merge when they both oppose those intentions of Good which are based on rational calculation. And death indicates the instant which, in so far as it is instantaneous, renounces the calculated quest for survival. The instant of the new individual being depended on the death of other beings. Had they not died there would have been no room for new ones. Reproduction and death condition the immortal renewal of life; they condition the instant which is always new. That is why we can only have a tragic view of the enchantment of life, but that is also why tragedy is the symbol of enchantment.”

― Georges Bataille, Literature and Evil

December 24, 2011

bataille on the truth

Filed under: acéphale,paradoxism,philosophy — ABRAXAS @ 9:28 am

November 30, 2011


Filed under: acéphale,Georges Bataille,philosophy,sex — ABRAXAS @ 11:36 am

“To others, the universe seems decent because decent people have gelded eyes. That is why they fear lewdness…”

“But as of then, no doubt existed for me: I did not care for what is known as “pleasures of the flesh”, because they are really insipid. I cared only for what is classified as “dirty”. On the other hand, I was not even satisfied with the usual debauchery, because the only thing it dirties is debauchery itself, while, in some way or the other, anything sublime and perfectly pure is left intact by it.”

georges bataille
the story of the eye

November 27, 2011

on the great contempt

Filed under: acéphale,art,Georges Bataille,philosophy — ABRAXAS @ 5:44 pm

I want to travel further and suffer more. I undertake nothing that I do not take to the impossible, and everything seems to me to be conditioned in such a way that we know only its ridiculous aspects as long as we have not seen that on one point it touches on an aspect of ‘what is’ which can neither be seized nor not seized; neither known nor no known; and which confines us.

If I talk about a painter people are amazed when, before even saying anything about him, I place everything in question. This state of mind reigns uncontested in its immense scorn for anyone who is a painter – but not only a painter, of course: for a writer, a minister or a juggler . . ., the complete personnel of a large house. I do not believe it is wrong to be scornful of functions and services, and consequently of those who are charged with them. To put oneself in service is to be servile. In a world where everyone has their own service to perform, there reigns – necessarily – a great contempt for all.

Georges Bataille
André Masson, 1946

November 21, 2011

on what is revealed in sensuality

Filed under: acéphale,Georges Bataille,literature,philosophy,sex — ABRAXAS @ 12:29 pm

It is no longer a question of knowing.

To know to what vault the idea of God provided the key was to offer oneself the possibility of sleep, while Sade’s negation leaves the spirit faced with a truth which is neither of nature nor of the universe, nor of anything, but the absolute negation of nature and the universe, as if there were in nature – and in the universe – an ultimate possibility, at the extreme a possible transcendence, in the dissatisfaction of being, in the obsession with a passage from being to non-being. Perhaps this is not necessarily transcendence: being emerges from itself only on condition of no longer being, but desires as a possibility, an impossible transcendence. At this point of the explanation, understanding evaporates all of a sudden, the irreducible is here, such that a poetic – or negative – expression has had the immediate power to reveal its presence in sensuality.

georges bataille
happiness, eroticism and literature

on sadeian ‘apathy’

Filed under: acéphale,Georges Bataille,literature,philosophy,sex — ABRAXAS @ 12:22 pm

‘The nucleus of the sadeian world’, is, according to Maurice Blanchot, ‘the demand for sovereignty affirmed through an immense negation’. Here the essential good which man generally serves is revealed (and witholds the strength to reach the place where his sovereignty would be accomplished). The essence of the sexual world is not simply the expenditure of energy, but negation taken to the extreme – or, if you prefer, the expenditure of energy is itself necessarily this negation. Sade calls this supreme moment ‘apathy’.

‘Apathy’, says Maurice Blanchot, ‘is the spirit of negation applied to the man who has chosen to be sovereign. It is, in some way, the cause and principle of energy. Sade’s argument appears to be something like this: today the individual embodies a certain quantity of strength. Most of the time he wastes his strength by transferring it to benefit those simulacra called others, God or the absolute; by such a dispersion, he wrongly exhausts his possibilities by squandering them; but even more, he founds his behaviour on impotence, for if he expends his energy on others it is because he feels that he may need their support himself. This is a fatal failure, because he thereby enfeebles himself in a useless expenditure, and he wastes his strength because he believes he is weak. But the true man knows that he is alone, and accepts the fact; he denies everything within himself, the heritage of seventeen centuries of cowardice, which relates to others rather than to himself; feelings like pity, gratitude and love. He destroys such feelings, and as he destroys them he regains all the strength he would have needed to devote to such debilitating urges, and – even more important – he extracts from this work of destruction the beginning of a true energy. It must be clearly understood that in fact apathy does not consist merely in destroying ‘parasitic’ affections; equally, it is opposed to the spontaneity of any passion. The depraved man who immediately plunges into his vice is simply a freak who will lose himself. Even the great profligates, perfectly endowed with the talent required to be monsters, are destined for disaster if they are content to follow their inclinations. Sade insists that if passion is to become energy it must be compressed, and mediated through an essential moment of insensibility; only then will its potential be realized. Early in her career Juliette is ceaselessly criticized by Clairwill because she commits crime only through enthusiasm; she lights the torch of crime only from the torch of passions, and places profligacy and the effervescence of pleasure above everything. Dangerous indulgences. Crime is more important than profligacy; ‘cold-blooded’ crime is greater than crime carried out in the fervour of passion, but crime ‘committed in the hardening of the sensitive part’, crime that is dark and secret, matters more than anything else, because it is the act of a soul which, having destroyed everything within itself, has accumulated an immense strength, which will be identified completely with the acts of total destruction being planned. All those great libertines, who live only for pleasure, owe their greatness to the fact that they have annihilated all capacity for pleasure within themselves. This is why they carry out such frightful abominations, otherwise the mediocrity of ordinary sensuality would be enough for them. But they have made themsevles insensitive: they intend to use their insensitivity (which they have crushed and denied within themselves) to experience pleasure to the full and they have become ‘ferocious’. Cruelty is merely the negation of the self, carried so far that it is transformed into a destructive explosion. Insensibility causes a quivering through the whole being, says Sade: ‘the soul ascends to a type of apathy which is soon metamorphosed into pleasures a thousand times more divine than those that their weakness procures for them.’

Maurice Blanchot, Lautréamont et Sade
quoted in
Georges Bataille
Happiness, Eroticism and Literature

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