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FKA Twigs and The Process Behind Perfect

Words:

Edd Norval

Photos:

WeTransfer - WePresent
July 1, 2019

In a lonely, atmospheric and ultimately redemptive narrative, FKA Twigs, one of contemporary music's most challenging and genre-defining names ups the ante in a music video for her track 'Cellophane' that explores the intricacy of a one-sided relationship and her own path to understanding the pain it causes.

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The highly conceptual video had taken seed in her mind long before it became an actuality. Long before even she began the gruelling training required to make it possible. To do so, FKA Twigs undertook a year of intense pole-dancing practice, to explore the form in an intriguing and unconventional manner in the finished product.


Recently, in collaboration with WeTransfer's highly insightful WePresent series, we're taken behind-the-scenes, to understand the extent that her creative process germinated, evolved, shaped and defined over such a long period of her life.


Explained in the series is the idea of an audience only ever seeing the very tip of the iceberg - when everything is going smoothly and any challenges long having been overcome. We see a glossy product, a perfect presentation, and therefore come to expect that in other parts of our lives too. Overlooking the intimate details and moments that are actually poured into a performance or an event, it can be easy to simply take something for granted. Here, we access a hidden part of a creative person's life in order to grasp the magnitude that such an undertaking entails.

From seeing the video, shown at the top, to the process, shown just above here, FKA Twigs has left nothing to effects or stand-ins. Even moments that are shrouded in fantasy, where her dance is decontextualised from the stage and pole itself, are intricately choreographed using ropes and other equipment.


Creative expression, when it manifests in various forms, such as music, video and dance, has many myriad sources - detailed in the video - that barely comes into a viewer's mind. Here, in the relatively short video that runs to just over four minutes, we are reminded that it is nonetheless shot over the course of a day - a feat that requires vast stamina to maintain. Creativity is also business and in business, money is the ruling factor.


Creating huge buzz at the time of release, and rarely letting go since, the video will no doubt last in people's minds, hopefully kickstarting others in their own quest to produce. In agreeing to take part in the WePresent project - the second time FKA Twigs has done so - we see the magician's tricks. That's because FKA Twigs, and the people at WeTransfer, realise that the finished project isn't actually the real magic, but that the process and journey yields much of the power itself. Having watching both, the video is memorable and impactful, but understanding the process behind it contributes greatly. Knowing what one person and their team threw at a since expansive idea shows the true power behind it.

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