See the



Queen of the Revels


An installation inspired by FIVE CLEVER COURTESANS


The original run of FIVE CLEVER COURTESANS at the Vibe Bar, Brick Lane, also
featured a site-specific installation, entitled Queen of the Revels:

“Queen of the Revels was a way to delve into the themes of Five Clever Courtesans from a
different perspective,” says its creator, Sarah Blake. “The Vibe Live Gallery, which is adjacent to
the main performance area, is an amazing room and as Cabinets of Curiosity is all about creating
site-specific responses, I wasn’t going to miss the opportunity to utilise this extraordinary space to
enquire, explore and comment on the issues raised in the play.”

Queen of the Revels combined a 3d multi-media suspension – created using fine and applied
art techniques, photography, found objects and collage – with an audio installation that encouraged
the viewer/listener to investigate the work through different senses. The Queen herself was a curious
creature – on the surface, she was little more than an upfront good-time girl, displaying the trappings
of her trade. However, viewers who ventured beneath her skirts soon found themselves in a secret
world of intimate keepsakes and intriguing secrets, where – as Miss Gwynn notes in
FIVE CLEVER COURTESANS – the lover’s body becomes: “The limit and edge of your universe”.

The Queen also became, temporarily, the ‘sixth character’ in the play – a cast-off body and a lingering
voice that refused to be forgotten. She was a tribute to all the anonymous Queens of the Revels
through the centuries, who used their wits and determination to find a way to survive on the
precarious periphery of society.


Queen of the Revels included imagery manipulated from original photography by
Dan Barry (


The audio installation was created by Sarah Blake and recorded at
FUD Theatre Studios ( by Mark Loveday.


The audio performers were Gloria Sanders, Renata Byrne & Sarah Blake.

Many thanks to all those who gave donations to the
Cabinets of Curiosity Great Condom Collection.