Links To Make Ya Feel Inspired: Bjork, Illona Smithkin, The Woodmans

Bjork’s 1988 Interview: I watched this interview about 10 times–mainly for Bjork’s accent and calming voice. In the video, she talks about television and it’s influence on people and society. She takes apart the television and makes it seem all mystical and magical like she always does. How does she always do that? She totally draws me in when she creates her imaginary city mapped inside her television. Just watch, you’ll see what I mean.

Ilona Smithkin Interview: I first saw this interview a few years ago, but I like to re-watch it from time to time when I need an uplifting spirit to get me through the day. She’s part of the Advanced Style clan, a blog that features older women and their influential style. Ilona has a spirit that can capture anyone’s heart–believe me, she completely melts mine. An artist, performer, singer, and dancer—at 90 (at the time of the video) she still does it all! So for all the times you feel lazy, get up and do something. One of the greatest things she says is this: “I think we live in a time where advertising has taken over, and everybody wants the new things and they MUST have it. But if you don’t have it, we’re not going to die. It’s a wonderful thing not to NEED to have something.” And just like that, my heart smiles.

The Woodmans (2010): If you are a fan of Francesca Woodman like I am, this documentary is a must-watch. I saw the trailer first, eventually saw the documentary and was not disappointed. I gained a lot of insight surrounding Francesca’s childhood and photography career. The documentary is narrated by The Woodmans consisting of her father, mother, and brother, each of them telling their own experiences with Francesca. The film reveals tons of footage that Francesca shot during her career, including really personal snippets of her diary entries. As a viewer, you begin to understand the ups and the downs of a creative career, and what it must have been like to grow up as a Woodman.

The Radiant Child (2010): I frequently watch documentaries on artists, mainly because artists always seem to lead very colorful lives. This is one of my favorite artist profiles done on Jean Michel Basquiat. It features interviews from former girlfriends, gallery curators, art critics, scenesters, and colleagues, all giving personal accounts of how they witnessed the growth of one of the world’s greatest artists.

Daises 1966: I enjoy films for both content and visual style, which is why Věra Chytilová’s film Daisies is easily one of my favorites. Daisies follows two rebellious young women as they create havoc all around them. The film hails from the 1960’s, when the avant-garde film movement in Eastern Europe was gaining fire. During the 60’s, the film was even banned from the Czech Republic because the imagery depicited the two main characters wasting food. Wasting food was seen in poor taste as the country was experiencing a huge economic downturn from the Cold War. Some of the best imagery I’ve ever seen are in stills from this movie.

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