Inez + Vinoodh - Biophilia


For Björk, this project required years of research into nature, and sounds in nature, and how those sounds could be translated into a score, maybe even into an instrument. She showed us all of her research—movies from the BBC, nature films, and all about crystals. Once we got into the studio to shoot the album cover, it was very important to Björk that we create the ‘Biophilia’ character, like we’ve done for every album, which is the persona that she would be on tour and in everything related to the album. A few things were very key to her : certain colorful elements, like copper, and different stones. So with Eugene Souleiman, the hairdresser, we created a wig based on this galactic idea of color and how Björk had described the way in which certain stones change color in heat. We decided to treat her face as if she’d found a beautiful rock and sliced it open, and inside there was this treasure. When we were shooting the album cover, it all just looked so beautiful, so we said, ‘You know, we have our camera here. Why don’t we film you singing Moon ?’ It was basically two takes. Once we had the footage it was so beautiful and simple and touching, and so together with M/M (Paris) and James Marion, her creative director, it was constructed into a video.

Inez van Lamsweerde - Artsy- Mars 2015

I’ve got a really amazing relationship with the photographers, Inez and Vinoodh, who I’ve worked with now for like 16 years, 17 years. I actually just came from them now, just seeing the new video they’ve done for me. I’m like, almost in tears. They really made it happen again. They’re so understanding of me. I’m really grateful for their vision. I’m able to mirror myself in them.
This is actually a really typical thing that happens. I will arrive and say, “I want big orange hair, it has to be like a cloud, this woman has her head in the clouds, almost a piss-take, of this kind of music teacher, kind of trippy. Who takes the kids in her class on this utopian journey through the galaxy, teaching them psychology. So she has to be a bit nuts.” So I kind of asked for a big orange Afro and I brought some dresses that I collected. And then my friends from Three as Four, they’re clothes designers, they live here in New York, friends of mine since 2000. They brought this harp, and I asked if we could bring crystals. I just made up this nutty music teacher who’s trying to unite nature and music.
M/M, the guys who designed my album cover, were really understanding, too. They came up with this galaxy here, and this logo. And they worked a lot with the photographers. So it’s kind of teamwork. I maybe go out hunting and bring the ingredients and throw them on the table, but then everybody cooks together the meal. I’m not really good—I once tried to photograph myself. But I hated it because it’s so narcissistic. I can’t get my head around it. And like the selfie thing, I’m not from that generation or something. And also there’s something catalyst that happens when you work with amazing photographers and a design team. They just put in the magic and the yeast, and make it all work.

Björk - Time - Mars 2015

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