August 11 2022

heavenly body
plural noun: heavenly bodies
  1. a planet, star, or other celestial body.

Our bodies are conduits, sex is transference of energy. Eyes, mouths and orifices become blackholes against glittering skin, fluids dark against phosphorescence. Reflecting each other. Elemental fusion.

Sexual connection transfers energy - someone else’s body, their heat, their pressure. Electrical charge. Merging together and reflecting back. The dust here becomes physical manifestation of that transfer. Starting with one body until both are covered. Only visible in very particular lighting conditions we have one scene filmed at the same time on two cameras, only one reveals the shimmering reflective particles being passed from body to body.

The effect feels like looking at stars of distant galaxies and at atoms under a microscope. Glittering pixels on a screen. 

So, this might be an entirely self indulgent and left-field tangent but stay with me: one of my favourite books as a kid was Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials where they talk about the idea of Dust.

Dust, in the series, was an elementary particle. It clings to people, to things, it’s unseen to the naked eye except through use of special instruments by scientists. It’s said to give consciousness. Angels in this book were beings that are created from condensed dust. In the series the church studied dust, believing it to be the manifestation of the concept of original sin, Eve ate the forbidden fruit from the tree of knowledge and paradise was lost - they became aware of their nakedness, of evil and shame, but awareness is also consciousness.

According to the church, this sin sticks to all of us but in Pullman’s book, dust or sin, it’s also knowledge, free thought, the ability to be curious and question and to experience the sensual world, for this reason the church in His Dark Materials works very hard to restrict it. Sex is sin but sex is also consciousness, connection and experience.

Your body, a collection of eternally recycling atoms, elements forged in the crucible of dying stars, experiencing sensation, connection and pleasure. Against all the odds, here, right now on this planet, in this moment, living, fucking, feeling; pretty miraculous.

I realised some of my favourite science fiction has themes of strange proliferating unknown particles, JG Ballard’s The Crystal World, the shimmer from Jeff Van Der Meer’s, Annihilation. Captivating but untameable, spreading outside of our control, slowly covering everything.

3B7D9198-A425-42A2-AD83-4087CAED9F36.JPG 2.17 MB

The film we made in lockdown Fuses was the test run for this reflective spray effect and we knew we wanted to see how it would work with more bodies when it was possible again, getting to realise this with two wonderful performers was a dream come true. For the soundtrack we returned to the amazing Penelope Trappes whose work is this celestial and atmospheric trip hop that I just adore.

The performers here are Ravyn Alexa and Sam Spade, I've wanted to meet and work with Ravyn for such a long time and it didn't dissapoint. We shot this in Ravyn’s incredible apartment with amazing mirrored metal walls (that came complete with full functioning medical inspection chair with stirrups) Ravyn is such a dream and let us stay with her and showed us round the city, she’s not only insanely hot and talented but also just very fun to be on set with (letting us annoy their cat and move their furniture around). Both Sam and Ravyn were both totally down to get weird with the spray and play with our ideas. Watching this scene unfold through the cameras was magical.

Fuses, Four Chambers (2020)
His Dark Materials, Phillip Pullman (2000)
The Crystal World, JG Ballard (1966)
Annihilation, Jeff VanderMeer (2014)
spit, squirting, light face fucking, light rough sex