Publication : 06-06-2021

#interview #portrait #random questions

8 questions to ERZIELKONSCHT founder Isabelle Bolliri

1. What’s the first story you remember hearing?

For me, it’s "De Kropemann". My grandfather used to recite this Luxembourgish legend to us all the time as a poem. I didn't really understand what it was about, but every time I walked past a cellar or a well, I was afraid that the creature from the story would appear from the darkness. Although the story frightened me, it was fascinating. Since I knew the poem by heart, me and my friends would recite it in turn to terrorise the neighbourhood children.

2. What is your connection to stories?

The stories strengthen family ties. My grandfather rarely spoke; instead, he communicated through poems and traditional Luxembourgish songs (even army songs!). That was his way of expressing himself and communicating with us.
On the Italian side, I heard many horror stories involving pigs that eat children, haunted houses, witches and malocchio... And of course, I was told that these stories were true so it felt as if fiction were mixing with reality. Telling and hearing these stories became part of my identity.

3. Why is it important for you to tell stories nowadays?

For this very reason, I think it is important to continue to transmit all these stories around the world. They are both unique and universal. The fact that they have been passed down over time speaks for itself.
For me, there is no real difference between fiction and reality because we all know that every story acquires new elements as it is told. There is no absolute truth (our age is a magnificent example of this) and the art of storytelling constantly reminds us of this. But people can choose what they want to believe. Stories also draw our attention to facts that we would rather ignore; they are the mirror of a society.
Human beings need to collect stories to exist. In the end, everyone has a story to tell, and that is what makes us human.

4. What do you want to achieve with ERZIELKONSCHT ASBL?

This project will take us off the beaten track and showcase various forms of the art of storytelling. Stories, like music, are an inexhaustible source of inspiration. There are so many to discover that a single lifetime simply isn’t enough.
It would be great to be able to attract a diverse audience and build cultural links through storytelling.

5. Snow White or Cinderella?

Snow White.

6. Which work of art inspires you?

It’s too difficult to choose one, but I would say that I’m attracted to opposites like beauty and ugliness, life and death. I love ‘still life’ paintings and taxidermy, for example, and going to natural history museums to look at curiosities. Nature is my favourite inspiration.

7. What puts you in a good mood?

Drinking a glass (or two, or three…) of red wine as well as vinyl records from the past and reading beautiful books (preferably all at the same time!).

8. Banana or coconut?

Crazy bananas