Swedish artist and designer Erika Janunger’s short film “Weightless” is one of those things that you watch, and while you’re watching you’re not totally sure what you’re seeing or why you even like it, and then you realize you’ve watched the whole thing. Then you watch it again. Then you realize you’ve let it sink in and feel like an ass for not loving it the first time. But that’s the thing sometimes about breaking new ground – it’s so new you need to digest it and let it breathe until you really catch on to what you’re seeing.
A combo of dance and interiour design, this short film was Janunger’s masters project and is her way of exploring the intersection of architecture, choreography, and music. Though she’s not the first film maker to tilt a set to create the illusion of defying gravity, I’ve never seen it done so quite unapologetically before. It’s not a gimmick or just a visual trick – this weightlessness is part of these girls’ reality. Counter to our normal fantasies of the freedom of flight, they seem (in a crazy paradox) weighted down by their very weightlessness. Like it’s a cross they bare. When brilliant dancers Malin Stattin and Tuva Lundkvist gaze right into your eyes, you can tell this isn’t a state of being they’ve chosen for themselves.
She’s also almost shockingly multi-talented. She not only directed, art directed, and set designed “Weightless”, but she also wrote the music and lyrics to it’s haunting soundtrack. She’s got a Tori Amos-esque sound that I clearly dig, and she’s an equally accomplished liver performer. In fact her site divides into two sections – design and music. On the music portion you can download a few tracks for free and order her debut album “Hazy”. Plus, you can see a video of her performing live at the Lilith Eve’s Gala in Stockholm here.
On the design side, her site is a trove of various projects, including “Workshop in the Woods” where she lit up a forest near Gothtenburg, Sweden.
In fact the more you look into her work, the more it seems like there’s nothing she can’t do. Holding a masters in interiour architecture and furniture design from the College of Art, Craft, and Design in Stockholm, Janunger clearly has an eye for design. But it’s her drive to explore the art of how people interact with her creations – with lighting, with a chair – that sets her apart. She is driven to create, as her statement on her site makes pretty clear:
“Creating architecture and design, is like making music. By using three dimensions – three notes, you make a chord. By using many chords, shapes and spaces – you can create an entire world… I want to understand how all that works, I want to create surroundings and objects based upon peoples lives and feelings. I want to create worlds, I want to play God.”
Via Brian Fichtner @ Cool Hunting