The Artist Explains: Sara Kendall - 'Comply'
Brooklyn-based dark pop artist Sara Kendall talks us through the striking aesthetics and powerful storyline in her music video for, ‘Comply’ .
‘Comply’ is the brooding and sophisticated title track taken from Sara Kendall’s forthcoming EP, which tackles the liberating concept of taking ownership of one's own perception.
Sara Kendall Explains:
Where was the video for Comply filmed?
We filmed at Monaliza Studios in Williamsburg.
How does the video connect with the song?
The music video is a visualization of feelings collected as woman in the current social climate. Both the song and video showcase the unsettling idea of feeling like you need to comply - even when you do not want to. As the co-director and producer for the video, I wanted to portray the harbored guilt that I have personally felt myself carrying on my shoulders for years both sonically and visually. I want to spread an awareness of the feeling and to give anyone who has felt this way something to relate to. I want for them to know that they are not alone and to start a bigger conversation.
Are there any behind the scenes stories you could let us in on?
The video was created with a female based team and shooting went incredibly smoothly. We actually finished filming early! I feel very grateful that my co producer, Sam Granados, and I were able to build a reliable and hard working team to have the project come to life. Prior to the shoot, I was very stressed trying to set the logistics up, but ultimately everything worked out. My mom and sister play two of the women in the video, so it was really cool collaborating with them and using our personal experiences and stories as inspiration.
Can you tell us about the ideas/ themes/ imagery used?
We chose Monaliza because of the antiquity of the rooms and props available. There's a certain darkness to it that I found myself gravitating towards. Each woman in the video represents a theme. One is naivety and willingness, one is sexuality, one is wisdom and experience, and one is helplessness. I wanted them to intertwine with each other and explore each other's worlds. The choreography in the beginning of the video shows how women are conditioned to turn against one another. The later half represents how we can come together to lift each other up instead. There's a delicateness to the women but also a hardness and strength in their faces and movements. I liked exploring my personal idea of the power in femininity and the importance of our relationships with one another.
Is there a message the video is trying to convey?
'Comply' is a re-awakening for me. In the past my writing has gravitated towards victimization and the disparity of suppressing emotion due to fear and uncertainty. In 'Comply', I wanted similar concepts to be portrayed with confidence and empowerment. It’s standing up for myself instead of wallowing on past events where I have felt wronged or damaged from. The song is still melancholy and haunting, because the events still are to me. However, I wanted to take those same experiences and reflect upon them with a different lens. Resentment and liberation from it can coincide and exist together in unison. In fact, I’ve found recently that they often do. It’s tangible validation for me to know that I am in complete control of my own mindset and have utmost ability to choose how I want to govern my life.
Interview feature by Karla Harris