sculptural installation using bricks and rope

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BERLIN // LONDON

Gestalta is a British born performance / installation artist, and teacher. The primary focus of their work is shibari (aka kinbaku / Japanese rope bondage).

They have performed around Japan, Australia, and many European cities including London, Moscow, Paris, Berlin, Rome, Athens, Prague, Geneva, Barcelona, Lisbon, Helsinki and Lyon.

They are the author of "Shibari Suspensions: A Step by Step Guide", which is now available here.

sketch of girl performing shibari self suspension

See my PORTFOLIO for photos / videos of my work.

I was first introduced to shibari in 2007 and have been immersed in it ever since.
 My interest was initially sparked by the aesthetic of shibari; the seemingly organic structure of rope melding with flesh in the works of Nobyoshi Araki, and other artists whose works I had collected in scraps from the few Japanese publications available.

As I began to practice it myself I also found an interest in exploring the potential of ropes to open up new ways to connect with the body, with other people, and the effects of pushing myself into seemingly ‘extreme’ psychological and physical states.
I began using shibari in performance in around 2009 and gradually developed an interest in impermanent structures, and the fragile balances found between us, our environment, and within intimate connections.
Although I see shibari very much as an art form, it is also important to me that it’s roots in pornography are not glossed over; I see it also as a powerful way of reconciling any perceived conflict between art and sex and exploring the relationship between the two.

sketch of girl performing shibari self suspension

My approach to shibari has evolved as the result of over a decade of practice on both sides of the ropes and a broad range of influences which I appropriate, mix and develop in my own practice. This has shaped my teaching style into one that seeks to reflect the experience of both tying partners on a deep level. I have a strong belief that shibari should not be prescriptive and encourage students to explore it as a flexible set of tools; adapting each tie to the body of the tied partner, and to their needs and desires within each individual situation. My teaching process aims to enable this by giving students a framework of the fundamental principles behind shibari; including safety efficiency and fluency, but also body awareness, communication, and conscious consideration of their own experiences and motivations.

I absorbed most of my technical rigging style a natural process of observation and experience from inside the ropes of the people I was tied by as a model. In this respect I have been lucky to have had a broad range of influences: Kazami Ranki, who I modeled for from 2011 to 2014 and whose style still provides fundamental building blocks for my own style, Miumi-U who studied with the Ichinawa-Kai, and Esinem. More recent stylistic influences include Pedro (whose own style was heavily influenced by Kanna and Naka Akira), and Yukimura Haruki, whom I was very fortunate to meet in 2015.

WORKSHOPS

I travel frequently to teach workshops; if you are an organiser / facilitator and you are interested in arranging something with me in your area please get in contact to discuss.

I am happy to tailor workshops to suit the level and interests of your group.

It is important to me that my workshops are held in an environment that promotes inclusivity and mutual respect between all participants; I do my best to reflect this personally where possible, and ask also that workshop facilitators/organisers and attendees have an open-minded and aware attitude.

PRIVATE SHIBARI TUITION

I am available to teach privately in any of the cities I am traveling to. Please see my schedule for information on where I will be, or contact me to find out when I might be coming to your area.

Private lessons are available to students of all experience levels and are individually tailored to your needs. You can book regular lessons for a structured overview, or one-off lessons to learn particular things of interest to you with more attention to detail than can be found in a group environment. Please feel free to contact me to discuss your interests.
Although I don't teach 'bottoming skills' as a standalone subject, I am very happy to be booked for private sessions that are focussed on the model, helping both partners to develop together.

“Cannot recommend Gestalta enough for their private lessons - a wonderfully knowledgable and patient teacher able to tailer the classes to your needs!” - M

FURTHER RESOURCES

My book "Shibari Suspensions: a step by step guide" is now available. You can order a copy direct from me using this link. This is the only place that you can pick up a signed copy, and is also currently the only place the profits from your purchase goes to me as an individual rather than a larger business, so your support is hugely appreciated.





SCHE


OCTOBER to DECEMBER 2019
16th September - Gothenburg (SE)
4 - 6 October - Prague Shibari Festival (CZ)
November - New York (US)
APRIL to JUNE 2019
26 - 28 April - UKREX, presenting (as switches with Tamandua) (UK)
24 - 26 May - workshop, Oslo (NO)
28 - 30 May - Berlin (DE)
1 - 2 June - Workshop, Stuttgart (DE)
JANUARY to MARCH 2019
11 January - SORT zine secret show, Performance with Brooke Candy - London (UK)
31 January - Royal College of Arts, performance, London (UK)
9 February - Unbound workshop (teaching), Birmingham (UK)
14 February - SORT zine Issue 4 Launch, Durational performance, The LNCC - London, (UK)
16 February - Performance: opening Ingrid Kraftchenko, London Fashion Week off show at FOLD - London (UK)
2 - 3 March - Workshop, Stuttgart (DE)
4 March - 'Spellbound' film screening, Stuttgart (DE)
9 March - Rope Office Hours (teaching) - Leeds (UK)
OCTOBER to DECEMBER 2018
6 - 7 October - Workshop with Tamandua, Oslo (NO)
12 - 15 October - London (UK)
17 October - Research and Development workshop on 'Weakness'. ICDancing, LAB, Leeds (UK)
25 - 29 October - 'Spellbound' Shooting, Stuttgart (DE)
31 October - Evening Workshop - Nawakai, Stuttgart (DE)
16 - 20 November - London (UK)
27 November - 7 December - Berlin (DE)
30 November - Kinbaku Croquis/Life Drawing - Berlin (DE)
18 - 20 December - Cambridge (UK)
JULY to SEPTEMBER 2018
1 - 4 July - Rome (IT)
20 July - 'Dream of the Fisherman's Wife' short film premier / 'Corpseplay' performance, Mainoeuvre, Berlin (DE)
24 July - 2 August - Cambridge / London (UK)
6 - 12 August - Shibari Camp - Smögen (SE)
21 - 23 September - Performing at Rome Bondage Week (IT)
28 September - Performing at Berlin Art Week with Tamandua - Gender Archive Exhibition, UY Studio (DE)
APRIL to JUNE 2018
27 - 29 April - Performance / Workshop with Tamandua, Helsinki Shibari Festival (FI)
5 May - Queenbaku #7, Performance, Place des Cordes, Lyon (FR)
5 - 6 May - Workshop, Place des Cordes, Lyon (FR)
7 May - Tuition, Place des Cordes, Lyon (FR)
11 May - Rope Visions, Performance with Tamandua, Faust bar-Art Theatre, Athens (GR)
12 - 13 May - Workshop, collaboration with Tamanadua, Athens (GR)
16 June - Performance, Fausto, Barcelona (ES)
16 - 17 June - Workshop, Fausto, Barcelona (ES)
30 June - 1 July - Workshop, Ritual Lab, Rome (IT)
JANUARY to MARCH 2018
9 - 11 February - Workshop (teaching), Labyrinth, Brisbane (AU)
17 February - Performance, Rope Hub, Melbourne (AU)
17 - 18 February - Workshop (teaching), Rope Hub, Melbourne (AU)
2nd March - Performance, Adelaide Fringe Festival (AU)
3rd March - Performance, Adelaide Fringe Festival (AU)
3rd - 4th March - Workshop (teaching), Adelaide Rope Week (AU)
11th March - Performance, Bound, Melbourne (AU)
line drawing of a couple dancing

CNTCT

Enquiries and bookings: info@gestalta.co.uk.

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SELECTED

"Intimacy and Impermenance" keynote presentation and performance at the Intimaterial symposium
(Royal College of Arts - London, UK, June 2017)

“Circle Drawings" : 17 minute durational performance, and performance relic
For Mat Chivers. Performed by Gestalta and Marika Leila Roux. Live digital sound by Moire.
(PM/AM gallery - London, UK, November 2016)

"Shibari" : 75 minute durational performance.
Performed by Pedro Diniz Reis and Gestalta.
(Culturgest - Lisbon, Portugal, June 2016)

"Shibari Suspensions: a step by step guide" | Author: Gestalta
(ISBN 978-0-9576275-4-3, published by Kahboom, May 2019)

Akechi Denki 10th anniversary memorial - Performance by Pedro & Gestalta
(Tokyo, Japan, July 2015)

Performances and presentations at international shibari festivals in cities including:
London (2009, 2011, 2012, 2015), Rome (2018), Sydney (2013, 2014), Berlin (2015, 2016), Prague (2016), Moscow (2016), Tallinn (2016)

FULL CV

PERFORMANCE

- Performance for Ingrid Kraftchenko off show, FOLD, London Fashion Week
(London, UK, February 2019)
- SORT zine Issue 4 Launch, Durational performance, The LNCC
(London, UK, February 2019)
- "Crafting the paradisial erotic" performance, Royal College of Arts
(London, UK, January 2019)
- SORT zine secret show, performance w/ Brooke Candy, Emily's Bar
(London, UK, Janauary 2019)
- Berlin Art Week, performance at Gender Archive exhibition, UY Studio, with Tamandua
(Berlin, DE, September 2018)
- Rome Bondage Week
(Rome, IT, September 2018)
- 'The Dream of the Fisherman's Wife' / 'Corpseplay' performance; Mainoeuvre, with Tamandua
(Berlin, DE, July 2018)
- Fausto
(Barcelona, ES, June 2018)
- Rope visions
(Athens, GR, May 2018)
- Queenbaku #7, Place des Cordes
(Lyon, FR, May 2018)
- Helsinki Shibari festival
(Helsinki, FI, April 2018)
- Bound
(Melbourne, AU, March 2018)
- Adelaide Fringe Festival
(Adelaide, AU, March 2018)
- Ropehub
(Melbourne, AU, February 2018)
- Intimaterial, Royal College of Arts
(London, UK, June 2017)
- Shibari Night
(Prague, CZ, June 2017)
- "Justine" performance at Vertigo Förlag
(Malmö, SE, June 2017)
- Eurix No. X, Performance
(Berlin, DE, March 2017)
- Melbourne Rope Dojo
(Melbourne, AU, March 2017)
- Studio Kink Sydney
(Sydney, AU, February 2017)
- Sydney Hellfire Club
(Sydney, AU, February 2017)
- Evil Girls HQ
(Gold Coast, AU, February 2017)
- Adelaide Rope Space
(Adelaide, AU, February 2017)
- Peer Rope Perth
(Perth, AU, February 2017)
- The Soap Box
(London, UK, December 2016)
- "Circle Drawings". For Mat Chivers. Performed by Gestalta, Marika Leila Roux and Moire at PM/AM gallery
(London, UK, November 2016)
- Prague Shibari Festival
(Prague, CZ, October 2016)
- The Soap Box, Performance + event organiser / curator
(London, UK, October 2016)
- RopeFest
(Tallinn, Estonia, July 2016)
- Rope Spirit Festival
(Prague, CZ, July 2016)
- "Shibari" Performances at Culturgest
(Lisbon, Portugal, June 2016)
- The Soap Box, event organiser / curator
(London, UK, June 2016)
- Moscow Knot
(Moscow, Russia, April 2016)
- The Realm of Shunga, immersive theatre
(London, April 2016)
- The Soap Box, Performance + event organiser / curator
(London, UK, April 2016)
- The Soap Box, event organiser / curator
(London, UK, February 2016)
– Bound
(London, UK, January 2016)
– Red Bind Variation 2 performance w/ Gorgone and Bruno Ducret (live cello)
(Paris, FR, November 2015)
– Nude Noir Halloween
(London, UK, October 2015)
– London Fetish Weekend
(London, October 2015)
– London Festival of Rope Art
(London, UK, September 2015)
– Nude Noir, Food Noir
(London, UK, September 2015)
– Miscellanea Arts Club, Vauxhall
(London, UK, September 2015)
– Eurix
(Berlin, DE, September 2015)
– Shibari by Night (Kasumi Hourai performance evening)
(London, UK, August 2015)
– Akechi Denki 10th anniversary memorial performance w/ Pedro
(Tokyo, JP, July 2015)
– Kinbaku Live at Studio 6 w/Osada Steve
(Tokyo, JP, May 2015)
– Saturday Night Live, Place des Cordes
(Paris, FR, April 2015)
– Nude Noir, Valentine
(London, UK, February 2015)
– Kinbaku Untied
(Barcelona, ES, January 2015)
- Bound
(London, UK, January 2015)
– Kinbaku Magic w/ Miumi-U
(London, UK, December 2015)
– Tokyo Underground w/ Miumi-U
(Geneva, CH, November 2014)
– Shibari Night with Miumi-U and Gestalta
(Prague, CZ, November 2014)
– Sydney Rope Festival w/ Kazami Ranki
(Sydney, AU, October 2014)
– OzKinkFest
(Melbourne, AU, September 2014)
– Start Options Exit & Melbourne Underground Film Festival opening night
(Melbourne, AU, September 2014)
– Bound
(London, UK, September 2014)
- Cirque Shibari (research and development)
(Berlin, August 2014)
-Wireless Festival
(London, UK, July 2014)
– Club Rosas 5 w/ Miumi-U
(Barcelona, ES, April 2014)
– Torture Garden. Performances w/ Kazami Ranki
(London, UK, April 2014)
– Impacts w/ Kazami Ranki
(Paris, FR, April 2014)
– PSYDOLL w/ Miumi-U
(London, UK, February 2014)
– Artful Badger: The Art of Hearts Valentines Ball
(London, UK, February 2014)
– Bound. Performance
(London, UK, February 2014)
– Sydney Rope Festival w/ Kazami Ranki
(Sydney, AU, October 2013)
-Sydney Rope Festival, collaborative performance w/ Kazami Ranki, Milla Reika and Nami.
(Sydney, AU, October 2013)
– Torture Garden Birthday Ball. Performances over 2 nights w/ Kazami Ranki
(London, UK, 10th - 11th May 2013)
– Artful Badger: The Love Nest Valentine’s Ball.
(London, UK, February 2013)
– London Festival of the Art of Japanese Rope Bondage, 2 performances w/ Kazami Ranki
(London, UK, 2012)
– London Festival of the Art of Japanese Rope Bondage w/ Kazami Ranki
(London, UK, 2011)
– Cirque du Soir, various regular performances w/ Esinem
(London, UK, 2011)
– Don’t Japanic w/ Esinem
(London, UK, 2011)
– Lucha Britannia: February Falls w/ Esinem
(London, UK, 2011)
– CSVPA show, Cambridge Corn Exchange
(Cambridge, UK, 2010)
– Rubber Ball, for Esinem
(London, UK, 2009)

WORKSHOPS

>>TEACHER<<
- Rope Office Hours- Handling, tension, & body mechanics - Leeds
(March, 2019)
- Weekend workshop at Nawakai, Heilbronn
(March, 2019)
- Unbound - Handling, tension, & body mechanics - Birmingham
(February, 2019)
- Evening workshop at Nawakai, Heilbronn
(October, 2018)
- Research and Development workshop on 'Weakness' with the Institute for Crazy Dancing
(October, 2018)
- Rome Bondage Week
(September, 2018)
- Shibari Camp, Sweden
(August, 2018)
- Weekend Intensive, Rome
(June, 2018)
- Weekend Intensive, Barcelona
(June, 2018)
- Collaboration with Tamandua Rope, Athens
(May, 2018)
- 2 Day Intensive, Place des Cordes, Lyon
(May, 2018)
- 2 Day Intensive, Adelaide Rope Week
(March, 2018)
- Weekend Intensive, Melbourne
(February, 2018)
- Weekend Intensive, Brisbane
(February, 2018)
- 'Skin and Breath', Berlin
(December, 2017)
- Collaboration with Kristina Marlen, Helsinki
(November, 2017)
- Level 1, Athens
(November, 2017) - Shibari Camp, Sweden
(August, 2017)
- Bournemouth Intensive Weekend
(August, 2017)
- Weekend workshop, Prague
(June 2017)
- Weekend workshop, Helsingborg
(June 2017)
- Weekend Intensive, Oslo
(April 2017)
- Eurix No. X
(March 2017)
- Prague Shibari Festival
(October 2016)
- Rope Fest, Estonia
(July 2016)
- Moscow Knot
(April 2016)
- Norway; 2 day workshop
(March 2016)
- London; Introduction to Suspension
(February 2016)
- London; Levelling up 4 week course
(January - February 2016) - London; Self Suspension
(August 2015)
- London; Strappado
(August 2015)
- London; Introduction to Shibari
(taught monthly; Aug 2015 - Nov 2016)
- Bournemouth Tea Party
(3 workshops during 2015)
– Paris; 3 day workshop
(April 2015)
– Edinburgh; 2 day workshop
(March 2015)
– London; Secret Shibari
(February 2015)
– London; Bound workshop
(January 2015)
– Glasgow; An afternoon with Gestalta
(November, 2014)
– London; A day with Gestalta: tying your partner, not a partner
(November 2014)
>>CO-TEACHER or TEACHER'S MODEL<<
- Model for Tamanadua
(Oslo, NO, October 2018)
- Model for Tamanadua, Helisnki Shibari Festival
(Helsinki, FI, April 2018)
- Model for Gorgone's Opus 3 & 4
(Copenhagen, DK, May 2017)
– Workshop with Pedro
(Melbourne, AU, March 2017)
– Workshop with Pedro
(Sydney, AU, February 2017)
– Workshop with Pedro
(Gold Coast, AU, February 2017)
– Workshop with Pedro
(Adelaide, AU, February 2017)
– Workshop with Pedro
(Perth, AU, February 2017)
– Workshop with Miumi-U
(Lausanne, CH, November 2014)
– Workshop with Miumi-U
(Prague, CZ, October / November 2014)
– Workshop with Miumi-U
(Berlin, DE, October 2014)
– Kazami Ranki Masterclass Model
(Sydney, AU, September/October 2014)
– Kazami Ranki Masterclass Model
(London, UK, April 2014)
– Kazami Ranki Masterclass Model
(Paris, FR, April 2014)
– Kazami Ranki Masterclass Model
(Sydney, AU, September/October 2013)
– Kazami Ranki Masterclass Model
(London, UK, May 2013)
– Kazami Ranki Masterclass model
(London, UK, October 2012)
– Kazami Ranki Masterclass model
(London, UK, May 2012)
– London Festival of the Art of Japanese Bondage
(London, UK, 2009)
>>STUDENT<<
- Naka Akira 3 day workshop, Copenhagen
(September 2017)
- Kasumi Hourai 5 day workshop, London
(August 2015)

FILM / TV

- Spellbound - short film
- Ashnikko, No Brainer - music video
- The Dream of the Fisherman's Wife - short film
- All Flags Are Grey, Bare Bones - music video
- Planet Kinbaku - documentary
– ‘The Pleasure of Rope’ – feature length documentary
– Cradle of Filth, Right Wing of the Garden Triptych – music video
– The Melodic – music video
– Jagga, Love the Pain – music video
– ‘Suitably Rewarded’: a short film collaboration with Disappointed Virginity
– ‘A Special form of Denial’: a film by Disappointed Virginity
– Fetisch Park – Music Video
– Documentary for french-speaking Canadian TV on artistic representation of body image
– Channel 4 – Body Shocking Show.

EDITORIAL, BOOKS & COMMERCIAL

- Author of 'Shibari Suspensions: A step by step guide' / released May 1st 2019
- DAZED, article on performance collaboration with Brook Candy & Sortzine / January 2019
- Tartarus Magazine / December 2018
- The Opéra Magazine Vol. VI / September 2018
- "I tie people in knots for erotic theatre", interview for "My First Time" podcast, Broadly and VICE, October 2018
- The Seduction of Curves: The Lines of Beauty That Connect Mathematics, Art, and the Nude. Allan McRobie - Princeton University Press, 2017.
- Rollacoaster Magazine / Fall-Winter 2016
- Eikyo Magazine / Winter 2016
- Kinoko Hajime / 10th anniversary book 2016
- Sang Bleu, 2014
– Maniac Club (Japan), January 2012
– Hustler’s ‘Taboo’ / Jul – Aug 2014
- 'Girls that Glitter love the dark' (Karolina Laskowska lookbook)
– Von Gutenberg magazine, Issue 3 (8 page editorial feature for Libertinesque)
– Feigenblatt Magazin, Issue 17 (editorial – China Hamilton)
– DUSTY Magazine, Issue 6, May 2013.
– //SLANG Magazine, Issue 10, December 2012 (editorial for Karolina Lakowska lingerie)
– SKIN. Magazine, The Dorsia Issue. Issue 3, August 2012 (editorial – Twitchet)
– Fet-X Magazine Issue 3 (editorial – China Hamilton)
– Sicky Magazine, July 2012
– Bernadinism Magazine #2 Spring Issue, 4 full pages.
– Nocturnal Magazine, March 2010
– Karolina Laskowska lingerie 'Girls that glitter love the dark' collection
- CD Album Cover ‘The Reins of Life’ by Lark Blames
– ‘Kinky Nature’ (Emma Delves-Broughton)
– ‘What Katie Did’ (Collection 7).
– ‘Gratuitous Sex and Violence – My Favourites’ (Alva Bernadine)
– ‘Chronicle’ (Mick Waghorne)
– Cover of EPS flyer.
– ‘Katie Kelly’s Pillow Book’: (EPS; Marian Alonso)



>> IMAGE CREDITS (this page): Gestalta, Maxime Borowski, Veterinarian, Pierre Estable, Anna Kostina <<
line drawing of girl in ropes