French Electronic Duo Air Soundtrack Short Film For Cartier - Rolling Stone
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French Electronic Duo Air Soundtrack Short Film For Cartier

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On November 9th, Facebook will play the role of art house cinema, premiering the romantic, surreal, and stylish short film, Painted Love, a project synthesizing the visions of two well-loved French staples: luxury brand Cartier and electronic duo Air. The collaboration, which will debut on Cartier’s Facebook page as part of their ongoing “How Far Would You Go For Love?” jewelry campaign, marks the brand’s first meaningful foray into digital media, as well as Air’s first formal fashion project. Painted Love chronicles a Manhattan artist’s struggle with the reality of his romantic ideals, lasts a total of four and half minutes and will play out as one phase of a three-part project. In keeping with the downtown creative vibe, Cartier presented a screening of the film at the Thompson LES Hotel in New York City last night.

The music video/cinematic hybrid was helmed by New York-based directors Waverly, who have worked with LCD Soundsystem, TV On The Radio, and The Rapture. “Music video budgets are getting less and less, so you rarely have the opportunity to really try something; it’s amazing Cartier funded this experiment,” says Ben Dickenson of Waverly. That experiment entails a surreal narrative which contrasts a painter’s wishful fantasies and his less speactacular reality. The myth of Pygmalion and Galatea plays into this tension, symbolizing “the impossible encounter between an artist and his muse,” according to a statement. Unable to cope with with the unattainablity of the “adorable” muses he creates and cannot find in Manhattan, the painter eventually chooses his dream world over reality and dives into his painting.

Air, who have developed a knack for soundtracking the confusing love lives of the young and restless (see: Lost In Translation, The Virgin Suicides), created a stirring, disembodied score to capture the feelings of hunger, hope, and sadness. As artists, they also related to the film’s plot. “The idea of the muse is very important to me, it is like a driving force,” says Jean-Benoît Dunckel, one half of Air, in a statement. “I know that for every album, we have needed a love story as a motivation. Creating art is like a huge need to be loved.”

Watch the making of Painted Love:  

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