A calming start to Monday morning after a four-day friend, sport and Olympic-filled weekender (that I can’t wait to tell you about!). I’ve been following ‘The Valtari Mystery Film Experiment’ by Sigur Rós for many weeks now. This project, as I’ve said before, gives a dozen film makers the same modest budget in order to create whatever comes into their head when they listen to songs from the band’s new album ‘Valtari‘. ‘The idea is to bypass the usual artistic approval process and allow people utmost creative freedom’…and it creates some really interesting and diverse visual outcomes. The video below is the sixth in the series created by New Jersey photographer Ryan McGinley. He is well-known for his large-format color photographs documenting his friends and Lower East Side subculture in New York since his teenage years where the fine art community took notice of his work when he printed a fifty-page, inkjet book entitled ‘The kids were alright’ (1999). Called ‘varúð’, it very simply shows a girl wearing a gold wig skipping down the streets of New York in a serene and carefree way, quietly yet boldly negotiating the city’s architectural intensity, urban and social fabric. Its dreamlike isolated clarity makes a clear statement as to how you define yourself in the place in which you live, and that nothing else matters other than purity of happiness within your surroundings. It made me instantly miss the city where I once lived in 2008, making the hairs on my arms and the back of my neck stand on end.
“This piece is my poem to New York City. I wanted to bring a childhood innocence to the streets, through a character whose own light and wonder effects the world around her. I’m always interested in an atmosphere where dreams and reality mingle on equal terms.” – Ryan McGinley