The address 142 rue Montmartre has quite a past. According to legend, the French playwright Molière was buried here and Émile Zola, another Parisian literary lion, printed J’Accuse in the basement. But whatever once laid beneath its floorboards, the historic location has undergone a serious Hollywood revamp as the spot where Oscar-nominated director David Lynch has brought a piece of his cinematic vision to life. Over the summer, Paris became home to the real-life version of the underground club Silencio from Lynch’s celluloid classic Mulholland Drive.
But while the “there is no band, this is all a tape recording” mantra of the film still applies, the venue has been given a lick of 21st-century paint, so to speak. Coinciding with Paris’ FIAC art fair, Silencio will launch the first of its quarterly takeover weeks, where one artist is given free reign over the club’s labyrinth of rooms and free to program the club’s various literature, cinema, and even culinary offerings.
For the first Carte Blanche, as the takeovers are called, Lynch himself will curate. This Friday, October 21, kicks off a week of performances by the likes of The Kills, Au Revoir Simone, Lykke Li, and Gary Clark Jr., culminating October 27 with the launch party for his new solo album, Crazy Clown Time. Featuring the vocals of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs’ Karen O, this is Lynch’s first album of electro pop.
Lynch claims that the club-cum-concept-space will be the new generation’s Factory. “There won’t be a Warhol-like guru,” he says, “but it will be open to celebrated artists of all disciplines to come here to program or create what they want.” Although, with a price tag of €780 for a year’s membership, perhaps not all the free-spirit, starving-artist vibe of the 60s will be rekindled.