“But now I have come to believe that the whole world is an enigma, a harmless enigma that is made terrible by our own mad attempt to interpret it as though it had an underlying truth.”
Somewhere between Las Vegas Nevada and Casablanca Morocco lies Southport.
Somewhere in Southport lies Pleasureland.
Separated by oceans and oceans of artifice.
A puzzle wrapped in a riddle, wrapped in an enigma, wrapped in a wind blown fish and chip paper, tipped lazily onto the edge of Lancashire.
The seaside itself an invention of the railways, and an expanding leisured class.
To begin in the middle, the Hollywood cinema creates an Orientalist mythology around Morocco. A confection of exotic confinement, conspiratorial glances and romance.
Who are you really, and what were you before?
What did you do and what did you think, huh?
We said no questions.
Here’s looking at you, kid.
Which in turn becomes parody of itself, constructing an airport that apes its own constructed image, a brash reflection in an eternally wonky mirage of a mirror.
The same mirror that reflects across the Atlantic, to that cap it all capital of Kitsch.
A veritable smorgasbord of visual treats and retreats in Mesquite Nevada.
Or the Casablanca Ballroom Westin Lake Hotel – Las Vegas.
Flying home to the Warner Brothers Stage 16 Restaurant
Or indeed Southport.
2011 – I had my first close up and personal encounter with the wood frame, chicken wire and faux adobe render rendering of North Africa, on the coast of North West England. It was in a state of semi-advanced neglect, an extraordinary experience. Pleasureland had already faked it’s own demise, a pre-boarded up, boarded up frontier town.
Where the edges of meaning are blurred beyond belief, take care.
We are dealing with uneven surfaces.
Who could resist a Moroccan themed crazy golf course?
You are now entering a Scoobidoo-esque scenario, where the mask is never finally removed, nothing is revealed.
2016 – I returned, the world had turned a revival was in part taking place, some of the pleasure returned to Pleasureland, whilst the seafront facing bars remained empty.
One man holds the key the glue, that bonds these distant lands.
The myth to end all myths.
For he is forever in his own orbit, omniscient.
Make the world go away And get it off my shoulders Say the things you used to say And make the world go away