Architectural Renderings Form Dreamy Getaways in 'Sun Lounger' [Premiere]

Artist Francesca Riley manipulates the pristine renderings of the idyllic resorts for a music video.
July 21, 2016, 12:15pm

Architectural visualization videos are a fairly standard way for architects to showcase designs to their clients. They're not usually used to create music videos for electronic musicians from South-East London. But that's exactly what's taken place in Semi Precious' (Guy Baron) video for the new single "Sun Lounger," taken from the musician's debut album Ultimate Lounge due to be released on squareglass.

The video, a collaboration between Baron and artist Francesca Riley, uses the work of architects Haakon Egil Lie and Djordje Kovacevic, turning the sun-drenched, palm-tree'd ideals of CG lounge living into kaleidoscopic landscapes that fold in upon themselves, Inception-style.

Advertisement

Screengrab courtesy of the artists

"'Sun Lounger' is about the craving for a sterile, exotic 'elsewhere'," Baron tells The Creators Project. "A longing to immerse in a sanitized impression of reality. I’ve always been strangely drawn to places that have this sense of sanitized or fantasized tranquility to them. Places that are overly sterile and peaceful to the extent that they present a certain gloominess. There’s something about this middle ground between utopia and dystopia that really moves me. 'Sun Lounger' and the other tracks on my upcoming album attempt to explore this middle ground and to come to grips with the sensations it triggers."

Screengrab courtesy of the artists

We've all been to places like these, on vacation, visiting friends, maybe you live in one of these unreal elsewheres. It's a shiny antidote to the messy grays of the real world and its seemingly heady collapse into end times. We'd rather not think of Brexit and Trump, gunmen, floods and famines. Better yet to smell the sun lotion and gaze upon sun-warmed modernity.

"Guy and I wanted to explore sites which presented a kind of 'cultivated nature,' so I began looking at videos which encompassed this," explains Riley. "I wanted to find rendered landscapes where architecture and nature had been so perfectly crafted alongside each other; creating these science fiction-esque worlds where everything is quite beautifully sterile. All the videos we used were sourced from architects, those studying architecture, or those experimenting with the software. We both agreed that the motion of the walk throughs created in Lumion (the software used to generate the models) was something really crucial to the look of the video."

Screengrab courtesy of the artists

All the visuals used in the video existed beforehand, none were created afresh so the pair sought permission from the makers who kindly gave it. Riley then set about manipulating and morphing the spaces and objects into more abstract forms. Mirroring them, turning these commercial structures into shifting illusion. This technique of manipulated collation also mirrors Semi Precious' method of creating the album, where he integrated fragments and samples from genres like chill-out and easy listening, juxtaposing those with VHS recordings along with "off-kilter guitar licks" and "rough-round-the-edges production."

Advertisement

"The track and the video seek to embody a certain viewpoint, escapist as it may be," notes Baron. "I think that the ability to envision an elsewhere, or to imagine an alternate reality, is in many respects what keeps many of us going. This sort of fantasy is often perceived as rather materialistic and self-indulged, but I am actually quite intrigued by it. I wanted to reflect the many complexities such fantasies hold."

Screengrab courtesy of the artists

Ultimate Lounge is released on 22nd July on squareglass. You can preorder the album here. Semi Precious has an album launch taking place on 28th July at The NINES, Peckham, London—go here for more info. Follow Semi Precious on Facebook. Visit Francesca Riley's website here.

Related:

LA’s Normcore Architecture Vanguard Presses On

Tracking Software Turns Fluid into Fizzing Forms

What Makes a Building Ugly?