The Famous Dennis Hopper Interview
I think Apex Magazine is trying to become trendy. They want me to do a piece on Dennis Hopper. What the hell does Dennis Hopper--who is a genius--have to do with art in the Cologne area in particular and with Germany and Europe in general? I am still trying to get a Guest Professorship in a German art school. Most Fluxus people, while very foxy, do not know much about art. In fact many Fluxus people do not know much about anything except getting ignition on bar tabs (dekkels), not sharing information and stabbing each other in the back--usually gratuitously. For the fun of it.
Dennis Hopper is, of course, important to any facet of art. He is an interesting, always rewarding actor; he comes off the wall and from the unexpected corner. What happens in the movies and acting is highly relevant to art, drawing paper manufacturing, beer & alcohol consumption at the Paris Bar in Berlin, Cafe Victor in Copenhagen, Chinn's in Cologne, Die Oul in Dusseldorf, triangulated with pastel, aquarelle and linen canvas sales in Tutti Paletti, Perl Paint, etc. divided by One Person Shows, 1/2 of all art sales minus artist's dekkels and palimony internationally. Luxembourg, Sweden and Spain are excluded from this averaging out system because I say so. Being a genius is not all the fun and games many people think but one has automatically the right to refuse certain data.
Then Dexter Gordon died of constellational misuse and bad luck. And Wolfgang keeps yelling I must do an interview with Dennis Hopper for the Basel Kunst Messe Apex Magazine. For several days I tried to call Screen Actor's Guild and ask for management. This is how you get your claws into a famous actor for an interview. I asked Apex to rent me VHS cassettes of seven Dennis Hopper movies. At my secret villa studio in Maastricht, Holland (I can't seem to land a teaching job there either) I have all the equipment to look at four Dennis Hopper films at once. Dexter Gordon dying is enough to tear Copenhagen apart and they want me to drop everything and do an interview with Dennis Hopper!
They have decided to open the Venice Biennale a month earllier this year. End of May I am supposed to be houseguesting with Napolitan friends who want to present me to their nubile fifteen year old black mistresses in Melindi, Kenya on the Indian Ocean. But I have to be in Venice! I want to write about how much I would like to be an art professor so I can stop running in and out of Germany and settle in a bit. Maybe even learn German a little better finally. But they want me to write about beautiful, stoned, cunning, wonderful Dennis fucking Hopper!
And now the gray eminence has died. Ingo Kummel died at 9:00 this morning while Lisa and Jean Louis Okito Cieslik were driving my oldest grandson Beck Hansen to the Koln Bonn Flughaven. Ingo died. Dexter Gordon died, Bob Watts died, Robert Filliou died, Andre Thompkins died and Joe Beuys died. My father died--Nicholas A. Hansen 93 1/2 years old. Helmut Qualtinger died. Everyone I know is dying and they want me to fucking interview Dennis Fucking Hopper.... For Apex! What is Apex becoming: Andy's Interview? Vogue Magazine? Wolkankreutzer? A threat to Spex?
They opened up Ingo's head to look for what they thought was a tumor and they found a secret compartment where he has stashed a Beuys, 4 Polkes, 8 Charlie Bananas, a Michael Butee, 3 Al Hansens, an unsigned Dieter Roth and a Meret Oppenheim! Ingo was a very special, unique person. I think an important part of success is to be a little defect. A great work of art to me is one that gives me butterflies in the stomach and hackles on the neck at the same time. Nothing verbal needed. Feeling. You feel it. To me a great work of art is not sure whether it is great or not.
Joseph Beuys, my father, Robert Filliou, Andre Thomkins, Bob Watts, Chet Baker, Dexter Gordon, and now Ingo Kummel. And Wolfgang Apex wants me to do an interview with Dennis Hopper. Dexter used to hold his saxophone out to the audience wwhen they applauded. He was saying, "I didn't do it, babies. The saxophone did it."
It is a sweet May night this end of the first day of May in 1990. I write this in Roland Eck at the bottom of Merowinger. The ground has opened up now that it has finally turned warm. And all the trees are budding. The night air makes one pleased with being alive. The body is the package the spirit comes in. Evolpost. At death the body goes down and the spirit, the best, goes up into the sky of our hearts.
Lots will be written about Ingo Kummel that is chronologically factual. I think about his wonderful sons Cain and Thorsten. I didn't know his daughter. I think about wonderful Anne Bahne. we had talked often about a party program for the year 2000...9 years out. If I make it you will be there Ingo. Dennis Hopper as well. Ingo Kummel died this morning at 9 AM because they couldn't get the paintings out of his head. Dexter Gordon died a few days before at 12:50. Round about morning and Roundabout Midnight.
Al Hansen Roland Eck Bar
Sudstadt 5 Koln 1
1 AM 2 May 1990
Foto of Ingo.