Nick Cave is an Australian musician with exactly the right amount of freaky. I've always quite liked this song of his.

That, however, is NOT the Nick Cave who is showing at Seattle Art Museum!

THIS is your new Nick Cave!
  • THIS is your new Nick Cave!
This Nick Cave is a badass Chicago-based artist and former Alvin Ailey dancer who grew up with a single mother and sevensix brothers and whose "Soundsuits" made of found materials from all over the world turn the performers who wear them into mysterious, raceless, genderless, classless beings.

Cave's "Soundsuits"—a cross between haute couture and African masquerade—stand on wildly exuberant still display inside SAM, but they'll also be worn and performed with in "invasions" across the city over the next few months. Some of these invasions will be planned, and some will be surprises—tests of how we meet strange forces that appear in the middle of our regular daily lives.

Even when they're not moving, the suits are so gorgeous, so stunning, they could induce Stendhal Syndrome in a camera.

Nick_Cave.jpg
I can't give away details, but the first surprise invasion is coming soon, and smack in the middle of downtown (let's say tomorrow afternoon). The people inside the suits will be Cornish and Spectrum dancers. They're not given any instruction except to act "with conviction."

I got to see the show—it's called Meet Me at the Center of the Earth—yesterday, and I shot lots and lots of pictures. I'll post some here, and the rest you can see by friending me on FB.

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I'll be writing about the invasions and the still-life suits on the white pedestals in next week's paper, and I also recorded a quick podcast with the artist yesterday, which we'll put up as soon as we can.

Thats human hair.
  • That's human hair.
Tiger-face, trapped behind birds he cant eat.
  • Tiger-face, trapped behind birds he can't eat.
I think this is going to be big. SAM Remix tomorrow night is sold out. This is the first time SAM has devoted 14,000 square feet of galleries to a contemporary artist.

As SAM director Derrick Cartwright said yesterday, "When we go up to the galleries, I think all of you are really going to say, 'Pablo who?'"