You described the space as a way of making sense of the old and the new, placing classic elements of club and music culture in a revised, daytime setting. What do you think first made you want to change how we most commonly experience music in a nightlife space?
There’s two sides to that.
One is to do with the market conditions and archaic nightlife legislation in Ireland - which leaves traditional clubs with only two or three hours of business, which until it is rectified or modernised is at best a struggle and not much of a buzz for anyone involved.
The other is personal - having spent half my life (since I was fourteen/fifteen) in clubs and nightlife spaces on abbeygate street, and outgrowing that experience - but not the club culture - I wanted to make a space that reflected my passion for a different type of club culture in a different setting.
Based on your experiences of being present in contemporary music and club culture, how do you think you’ve seen it evolve and what are your hopes for how we continue to experience it?
The club culture thing seems to come in waves. It had a huge moment in the 80s + 90s with the arrival of Rave Culture and the balearic house sound imported from Ibiza via DJs who went on holidays to the island.
Then it sort of went away during the Celtic Tiger years, it was a real high heels and “going out shirts” time. My friends and I hung out in dingy basements with crap speakers because that was the only space for that kinda thing at the time. And those flashy clubs of the time have disappeared altogether.
Since the recession hit and the internet generation has matured club culture has sort of resurged. Only this time it seems to be happening more online. I think with the easy access to home production and distribution of independent music catapulted with youtube, soundcloud and boiler room there is a whole generation for whom electronic music has pretty much replaced pop.
Unfortunately the disappearance of legitimate club spaces and the difficulty in dancing in any sort of makeshift venue in this country mean that this movement will remain in bedrooms instead of dancefloors. This makes me sad because club music is designed to be experienced on a dancefloor, where the many become one. If you’re listening to it at home in your bedroom on on your headphones isolated from the people around you, it’s still nice music, but it’s a different thing and it’s sort of bittersweet to think there are more people than ever interested in it but will never experience it.
What are your plans for the future of Pleasure?
The project’s full name is Temporary Pleasure, I called the cafe Pleasure for short as I thought it was easier and suited the opportunity more. But long before the cafe came up I was working on Temporary Pleasure as a club installation project. A temporary, open-ended club space that could move around in different buildings and spaces like a modern nightlife circus. But while the idea of always moving around is exciting it would be extremely challenging to operate and I think it would be very difficult to ever reach that comfortable plateau where the business is running smoothly.
My realistic plan is to establish a solid foundation (Pleasure) and from there build an event architecture and production studio which produces installation events outside of this building.
How did you curate the design and atmosphere of the space and what were important themes you kept in mind when creating it?
I had a couple of specific ideas I really wanted to do - like the modular dj counter (based off mobile sound systems) - but aside from that it was a matter of money. I ripped out the walls and exposed the foundations because it was essentially a free way of making it look cool. I found the light up benches (coincidentally they came from one of those celtic tiger nightclub designs). I got the speakers by accident when the ones I got off donedeal broke and the repair guy offered me his instead. The rest of the ‘curated’ objects are just my personal collection of club culture pieces. Photographs, books, prints and flyers I collected or my friends made over the years. There are themes for sure but it wasn’t a conscious thing, the stuff I like just tends to be from that world.
What do you hope Pleasure provides for those who visit?
For the circle of people who are as passionate about this stuff as we are and who are frustrated by the lack of space, I hope it gives a home to the placeless. For the passerby I hope it opens up a world they might not know exists - and hopefully some of them will enter the fold. For some a mirror, others a window.
You can keep up to date with Temporary Pleasure on their instagram.