Colourful, minimal and graphic, Sivan Kidron is offering us some visual rest bite today in these difficult times. “I am attracted to questions of connection and intimacy,” the Tel Aviv-based animator tells It’s Nice That of her soothing visual aesthetic, “I like exploring the way things, or people, touch each other.” Recently, she’s explored these ideas through abstract qualities; smoke, light and shadows, for instance. She treats these immaterial substances as if they were physical objects, observing their presence in a space, as well as its movement.
It’s a sensitive approach exemplified in the Royal College of Art graduate’s latest film Every Feeling. An accompaniment to the American singer songwriter Ezra Furman’s recent track of the same name, Sivan combined her interests in cinematography, painting and illustration to create this story. For as long as she can remember, she has always been interested in these three disciplines, so pursuing animation came about naturally as it crosses this intersection of storytelling and image.
“As I got more into animation,” she goes on to tell us, “I discovered working with sound, rhythm and movement, and that was fascinating for me.” It’s a unique way of working that has so far seen her make work for the likes of Red Bull Studios NY, Glamour magazine as well as the music labels Bella Union and AWAL. In both commercial and personal works, she utilises animation as a vehicle of evoking emotion, drawing on the medium’s connection to dance and performance through languid pictures and gestural movements. She goes on to say of her work, “it is like orchestrating many different elements simultaneously, with the aim of creating one magical moment.”
Crafting sharp lines through dense blocks of dreamy colours, Sivan cuts a contrast through compositions. Playing with “dark feelings and super bright colours,” she explores a complex duality through some pretty simple shapes. On this matter, Sivan adds, “I look for the challenge of carrying out an emotion or idea, and creating an atmospheric world, through minimal means.” The concept of repetition, in both the visual and conceptual sense, fascinates her specifically. On one hand, she is interested in what repetition represents, that being a product of digital culture as seen in GIFs or loops for example.
On the other hand, she cites how repetition was a quintessential aspect to animation’s first, and very primitive creations. A distinction she likens to primitive rituals in general. “I use repetition in movements to intensify their emotional effect, and to tell a story through it. It interests me to build a rhythm or a composition that tells a story while expressing emotion, from repetitive elements.” Something that’s keenly expressed in her latest music video Every Feeling as well as the animation she made a year ago for Kaho Nakamura titled Kittone!
For Every Feeling, Sivan looked to 1970s American motel rooms and their “melancholic Americana of flickering billboards and TV lights in empty spaces”. In a similar vein, she wanted to convey the feeling of overwhelming exhaustion or emptiness, an atmosphere that suited Ezra’s song, which was written about the feeling of tiredness, and having to experience draining emotions over and over.
Together, they imagined strolling through empty rooms or the exhaustion of all-nighters to portray this. Much like our current times at the moment, Sivan finally goes on to say, “the song is quite dark but there is also a lot of hope in it.” In the world that she has built, though it seems as if there is no sense of beginning or end, the closed-circuit atmosphere is reminiscent of the fleeting switch between reality and dreaming. “Like how the world might look like when you are utterly exhausted,” she concludes.
GallerySivan Kidron: Ezra Furman, Every Feeling
Sivan Kidron: Ezra Furman, Every Feeling
About the Author
Jyni became a staff writer in March 2019 having previously joined the team as an editorial assistant in August 2018. She graduated from The Glasgow School of Art with a degree in Communication Design in 2017 and her previous roles include Glasgow Women’s Library designer in residence and The Glasgow School of Art’s Graduate Illustrator.