Kitty Von-Sometime is an Iceland-based (England-born) filmmaker who creates beautifully strange and empowering performance art videos celebrating women of diverse backgrounds, ages, and body types. Titled The Weird Girls Project, Kitty’s art pieces are visual experiments aimed at releasing the participants from inhibitions and insecurities by exploring fun and unconventional forms of identity.
As a child born of the digital world, I have a compulsive hunger to record what I do. My inspiration comes from childhood dreams, from synchronicity, from public participation, in freeing those from their constraints, and a personal obsession with spandex.
In each episode, a group of women — many of whom have never met — are assembled and briefed on the secretly planned video shoot that Kitty has carefully planned. The results are inspiring: in “Secret Garden,” for example (shown below), women walk among the trees, unveiling both body and soul under the moonlight. In “Castle of the Apocalypse,” filmed in an abandoned fake Disneyland theme park in China, a shadowy crew dances amidst the ruins of greed and corruption. Taking a turn towards the humorously absurd, “Bunny Revolution” features a cast of rabbit-masked ladies who violently battle before throwing down their weapons and humping vigorously. In each of the videos, we see women improvising, playing, and morphing into expressive extensions of themselves, exploring their individual strengths and beauties while also working together as a supportive group. I had the opportunity to speak with Kitty about her project.
In the sound clip below, she explains the liberating and empowering aspects of her videos:
Kitty’s newest episode, #EmbraceYourself, is being released today, Monday, June 8th. Along with music by the Brooklyn-based electronic duo CREEP (in collaboration with Sia), the video portrays a dark room filled with mirrors and wet volcanic sand. Inside this room, women of various body shapes and sizes dance while completely plastered with golden glitter. Getting the glitter on (and keeping it on) was no easy task: the final strategy was to mix paint and hair gel and stick the glitter on while it was wet. The result of this creative labour is eerie and astonishing: the women resemble luminescent, otherworldly goddesses, and the shimmering appears to fuse their bodies together. Listen to the clip below for Kitty’s description of the glitter, the video shoot, as well as the goals of body positivity and self-love that drive it:
As she eloquently expresses in her Artist’s Statement, in each episode Kitty strives to “proactively involve those outside of art to become art, to live art, to feel art” (Source). Art is beautiful, terrifying, and liberating. As Kitty’s videos show us, by performing and inhabiting art, we can become free to explore and celebrate the vast range of bodies and identities that are cruelly categorized by the normative structures of mass media. “Everyone has their own beauty,” Kitty says in the below interview clip. “Every single person who has ever fallen in love knows that they fall in love with someone for something other than what they look like — and that’s a fact.” To #EmbraceYourself, then, means to discover that love in yourself, to uncover the facets of your body and soul that are beautifully unconventional, unpredictable, and unhindered.
Visit The Weird Girls Project‘s website to view #EmbraceYourself and other episodes. And if you find Kitty’s video inspiring, she enjoys talking with those who connect with her work and encourages anyone to get in touch. More photos and screenshots from #EmbraceYourself are featured below, as well as a selection of Kitty’s other art videos from The Weird Girls Project.
Birta Rán – Photography