Istanbul, message from the other side



Michaël Bloos creates the Universe of Madness. It is a project of multiple years in which arts and the world of psychiatry come together. The shows Istanbul, message from the other side and POETIC LICENCE, a documentary, podcast and multiple ‘Incredible nights’, together shape the search to a universal story that comes from a personal experience of Michaël. 

“Last year, my father lost his mind in Istanbul, on his way to find the writer Orhan Pamuk. And while he slowly fell into psychoses, he went missing in a city of 21 million people. 

A whole week my sister and I looked for him in the narrow streets of this centuries-old city, at the border of Europe, the man that has raised us. During this week I wound up at the back of Istanbul. To finally, after a political jostling and a tv-program viewed by millions, come out at the front. With my father. 

I have several fathers. Three in fact. Two of them are bipolar. With two bipolar fathers, and thus possible having a genetic predisposition for manic depression, my youth was assigned to no become like them. To not go crazy. To not lose control of reality. To know what’s real and what isn’t. And yet, or maybe because of all this, I became an actor, director and creator. To find a way of dealing with this reality.

– Michaël Bloos, theatre creator

The search in Istanbul is continued via the Universe of Madness and attempts to build a bridge between two worlds: the world of art, and the world of the mind. The paradox to want to experience the beauty and the fantasy, whole not losing control, fascinates Michaël Bloos endlessly. 

The coming period Michaël Bloos will built the Universe of Madness, in cooperation with Company New Heroes, other artists and partner from museums and the world of the Dutch mental health care. A search in theatre, film and podcast, to make sense of losing one’s sense. 

All projects and forms of expression can be adapted to different use and different contexts.

Credits: Michaël Bloos – Creator, Actor | Sanne van Rijn – Director | Gillis Biesheuvel & Martijn Nieuwerf – actor | Freek Vielen – writer | Lucas Kramer – sound artist

The Dutch edition of this page is more up to date