The Kipper Kids (Martin Rochus Sebastian von Haselberg, born January 20, 1949 in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and Brian Routh, born March 9, 1948 in Gateshead, County Durham, United Kingdom) are contemporary artists who live and work in New York, USA, and Beverley, United Kingdom.
Quoting from an announcement for the Berkeley Art Museum: "Through actions that at times stress the visual, and the violent aspects of social rituals, the British Team of Harry and Harry Kipper perform in a fashion that combines the zany theatrics ofSpike Milligan with a scatological slapstick that is all their own". Routh and von Haselberg created elaborate but purposely low-tech installations in which they would perform "ceremonies" using mostly found objects. Examples are "Tea Ceremony" (1972) a Japanese Tea Ceremony inspired piece and "Boxing Ceremony" (1972) in which one performer beats himself until bloodied whilst the other acts as referee. Japanese rituals, English Music Hall, Viennese Actionism, and the work of Samuel Becket were amongst their influences.
The Kipper Kids made two projects for television. For HBO they produced Mum's Magic Mulch, and for Cinemax, K.O. Kippers, while the Kids also appeared in a 1982 project for HBO executive produced by von Haselberg, "The Mondo Beyondo Show," a one-off variety show of sorts for performance artists (including a pre-Stomp Yes/No People, La La La Human Steps, Bill Irwin, Paul Zaloom and others) hosted by Bette Midler's Mondo Beyondo character. Von Haselberg made a number of films at American Film Institute with Routh in the lead role: "Quiet Lives" (1991), "People Are No Damn Good" (1991) and "Your Turn To Roll It #54" (1992). They also appeared as characters in the 1980 film Forbidden Zone and the 1989 film UHF. The Kipper Kids also performed a song in 1991 comedy film The Addams Family — "Playmates" which can be heard in the film and on its soundtrack. They also starred in the 1990 comedy film The Spirit of '76.
Currently Martin von Haselberg has created a series of large photographic images made into inflatable sculptural shapes titled,' Floatulents', and Brian Routh is working on soundworks that incorporate vocal soundbites of world leaders, politicians, madmen, poets, murderers and others.