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Moving Pictures, Part 1

Barney putting a hat on Bjork in the symbol- and ritual-rich movie.

Randy Kennedy‘s backgrounder in yesterday’s NY Times on the new Matthew Barney/Bjork collaboration, “Drawing Restraint 9,” is excellent. The new Barney, in case you haven’t heard, is a full length feature film that’s out now in New York. Barney’s left the world of Cremaster behind but this movie, in which he and his partner Bjork are the main characters sounds equally costume-heavy and ritual-driven.

By the way, skip the NY Times’ multimedia trailer feature which subjects you to a trailer-length commercial before letting you see the trailer. Go to Apple instead and see a real nice quicktime trailer, no commercials.

Bjork’s sculptural hair. Vaseline, one of Barney’s fave materials, apparently makes a big showing in this movie.

You are wondering how the two artists — Barney, the icy, symbol-driven sci-fi autobiographical movie maker and Bjork, the romantic writer/singer of haunting pop music about love worked their collaboration? My favorite quote from Bjork in the article sums up some initial problems:

Describing their first conversations about the project (Drawing Restraint 9) two years ago, Bjork said: “I wanted to know the structure of the movie, the emotional structure. ‘Where are the emotional peaks? Where are the emotional bottoms?’ And he’d just look at me, like, ‘What?’ “

Apparently enough monosyllables were coughed up to give the musician clues on how to compose music for the piece.

Wedding knives

Here’s Stephen Holden‘s review of the movie in which the characters played by Bjork and Barney get married in a Shinto-type ceremony on a whaling ship, then make love by fileting themselves in a ritual involving knives.