I’m slightly obsessed with this video.
Chino Moya’s brilliantly graphic video for St Vincent’s Digital Witness sees Annie Clark (aka St Vincent) as a uniquely emotion-free yet powerful presence in a new world of bright colour, strange buildings, future clothing, crazy hair and powerful regimentation.
Shot outside Madrid late last year, this is a bold, uncompromised vision involving excellent set design, costume design and post work as well as direction - and as Chino explains below, it’s testimony to Annie Clark’s faith in visual experimentation.
"They sent us a brief wanting something graphic and futuristic that would make a comment about certain aspects of our modern world. So I pitched this idea about a simplified reality with clean lines, flat colours and perfectly arranged geometrical spaces and Annie liked it. She’s got a very strong vision, not just musical, but also visual, so I’m really pleased she went for it and that she was brave enough to fly into a foreign country to shoot with a foreign crew having never worked with me before. Once on set she gave a performance that totally fitted into the video’s world.
"The video was all shot around the outskirts of Madrid, where I’m originally from, around some newly built council houses and in a water treatment plant. After the shoot we spent four weeks in post removing windows, trees, cars, pedestrians, etc, from the locations and adding a few extra elements to achieve the look we wanted.
"The inspiration for the treatment came from a few different sources, a soviet sci fi novel called We, the painter Neo Rauch, photographers Josef Schulz and Elad Lassry, Playmobil toys, comic books… But as soon as the project got signed off Stephane, the set designer and I made the deliberate decision to not look at any references in order to try to produce something that didn’t come directly from something else.
"The video was pure teamwork. Everyone understood the concept and they all added their individual vision into it, from Stephane’s block colour sets, to Maria Elena’s purposefully designed costumes, the shape Bea gave to Annie’s hair and the way in which Joaquín from post house User T38 rearranged the exterior locations.
"I’m still surprised that we managed to produced something like that in just four working days- thanks to our producer Ilduara and the endless favours she was able to pull…"