In the summer of 2014, Nicole Russo and I started planning a show at her gallery, Chapter NY, together. The gallery is a single room. It has a recessed doorway that is also a window, and an air conditioner pierces the glass above the door. The gallery faces south and receives direct sunlight, so the shade in the window is always drawn. A temperamental radiator sits on the floor. Steam from the city’s underground steam… [read more »]
Iran (via California), 1997
The 90s band Silhouettt -with three T’s- known as Sepideh in Farsi, consisting of three women, was supposedly the first all-female Iranian band. The name of this song, Korshid Khanom (Lady Sun) from their album, aptly-titled, “Water, Fire & Earth,” conjures up a Witches of Eastwick sensibility, however with Zoroastrian directions instead of New England Satanism. Regardless, it’s pretty amazing how much the movie influenced this particular video. Although the film was made in 1987, it was re-energized momentarily by the release of The Craft in ’95 and other teen goth films. Those shoulder-revealing tops worn by two of the three singers, in dusty mauve and white, really hark back to Cher’s character in the film in her iconic black, shoulder-revealing crop top.
The three women with their purposefully different colored hair is represented here by three, distinct head pieces: green fern, furry white twig and red feather. Although the kaftans and especially the jewelry in the form of hand beads, forehead medallions, face crystals, bangles and the general excess bijoux, reflects the ethnic situation in relation to the Disney-esque head pieces. We find the women against a background of majestic mountain peaks, ancient ruins, and other obvious, pagan landscapes. The choreography is super spell-binding, with it’s hand to face movements, evoking darkness and light. In the middle of the song we encounter a “sexy,” Clarinet solo performed by a young, floppy-mopped Iranian youth prompting the ladies to grin lasciviously (another reminder of cougar-like, witch behavior). Besides that, this song is reminiscent of a lost era of earth mother madness, occult shops, etc.
It is an isolated case of original witch house; witch house ideally referring to middle aged women making dance music about the elements, not the current and rather, mismatched ID.