Natural Beauty is a fairy-tale abstraction of a morning routine: a girl’s bedroom is in the woods, and she dresses lavishly, like some kind of forest royalty. This series begs the question: what is natural? How can it be defined? She appears to live in the forest—is that what makes her natural? Playing on this irony is what led to this piece. For visuals, I wanted to make it look like a kind of pastoral dollhouse, for a well-dressed fairy who lives in the woods. I was really influenced by Peau d'âne (English: Donkey Skin) a 1970 French musical film directed by Jacques Demy, within which the fairy godmother has a similar set up of glamorous things and clothes in the woods. Making this meant hauling a mirror, clothes, and sheets up to the woods near my house, which was quite the ordeal. Then, we hung up clothes on branches, pinned up curtains, and created a bed of leaves that we covered with silk sheets. There were a lot of moving parts, especially considering that we had to maintain social distancing by using creative angles and zooms. I’m really happy with the results, though—the product turned out like a brightly saturated fever dream, which I can’t wait to share with the world!
Director/Editor/Writer - Jo Gaffney
Actress - Calla Adubofourpoku
Composer - Jacob Culling