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New book explores the art of nightclub design from the 1960s to the present

Temporary Pleasure examines various scenes including the New York disco, Detroit techno and British rave culture

  • 30 January 2023
New book explores the art of nightclub design from the 1960s to the present

A new book from club space designer and producer John Leo Gillen will examine the history of nightclub architecture and design from the 1960s to the present day.

Beginning with the late-night spaces visited by members of the 1960s New York pop art scene, Temporary Pleasure looks at the distinctive design cultures of various critical club scenes.

Published by Prestel and available from April 23, each chapter focuses on a different scene, with ‘60s radical Italian clubs, New York disco, Detroit techno, Chicago house, 1990s Ibiza, British rave culture and Berlin techno all under examination.

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Key rave spots, clubs, superclubs and “post-clubs” have are also looked at including New York City’s The Paradise Garage, The Warehouse in Chicago, Ibiza’s Amnesia, Tresor in Berlin and Horst Arts and Music Festival in Brussels.

It shows how the spaces have developed throughout the years, in response to the unique cultural, social and political situations of each generation and place for those involved in the scenes.

The book also includes interviews with key players in these movements, including Ben Kelly, the architect of infamous Manchester haunt The Haçienda, as well as NYC disco DJ Justin Strauss and Detroit DJ and producer Chez Damier.

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Gillen, the book’s author, was raised around the nightlife industry in Ireland via his family’s nightclub business. He studied for and holds a master’s degree in Ephemeral Architecture and Temporary Spaces from Elisava in Barcelona.

The name Temporary Pleasure is taken from an Instagram account of the same name, where he first began archiving club spaces, which grew to become a wider project and collective of architects, event producers and creative professionals who are exploring new ways to build club spaces.

For more information about Temporary Pleasure and to pre-order the book, visit Prestel's website.

Isaac Muk is Mixmag's Digital Intern, follow him on Twitter

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