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Sarah Tanat-Jones: Scottish Opera (detail)

Work / Illustration

Sarah Tanat-Jones’s musical illustrations for the Scottish Opera

The opera isn’t a staple on my cultural calendar but its alluring arias and ostentatious costumes seem so exotic and intriguing that perhaps I should let the dramatic melodies permeate my ear drums more often. Especially when institutions like the Scottish Opera seem keen on engaging people of all ages by enlisting the illustrative talents of London-based Sarah Tanat-Jones.

Commissioned as part of the promotion of their new production of Carmen, Sarah’s colourful, musical pictures were projected onto the sides of buildings and in public spaces throughout Scotland. Telling the tale of Don José, a naïve soldier who is seduced by the wiles of the fiery Gypsy, Carmen, it was important for the images to be clear, communicative and bright, to not only convey the story but also be seen from a distance. There’s great movement throughout Sarah’s images and while she had to tone down some of the violence that’s in the opera, the passion, the sorrow and despair is all there in beautiful swooshes of colour and sweeping lines.

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Sarah Tanat-Jones: Scottish Opera

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Sarah Tanat-Jones: Scottish Opera

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Sarah Tanat-Jones: Scottish Opera

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Sarah Tanat-Jones: Scottish Opera

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Sarah Tanat-Jones: Scottish Opera

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Sarah Tanat-Jones: Scottish Opera

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Sarah Tanat-Jones: Scottish Opera

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Sarah Tanat-Jones: Scottish Opera