Katarina Löfström

Dobrila Denegri


DD: What made you start doing videos with abstract images, what was the trigger?

KL: The urge to make abstract images stems from my previous experience in doing pop videos. I love the process of putting images to music, and I have continued to use that method in my own work.
However, when it comes to them, I felt a strong urge to avoid telling a story, or to be "understandable" in a traditional sense. Our everyday life is so filled with images that we need to interpret, and understand, that I wanted to create a space for cerebral rest.

DD: Could you tell me more about the process: is it the sound that guides you, that makes you find the image, or it's other way around...

KL: The sound is almost always the starting point for my films. Without an idea fro the sound, no film. Then I try to combine sound ideas that I have with visual ideas.
For the moment I am very interested in how the human eye works, how it helps us perceiving the world around us, at the same time as it plays tricks on us. I am interested in the visuals we can only see on our own retinas, that can't be photographed or documented in a traditional sense.
Once I have managed to "marry" a sound- and a visual idea, I edit/animate the visuals to the music/sound.

DD: What sounds are you using? What music do you like?

KL: I mainly use already existing music, and sometimes I mix different tunes and use sound effects.
I am into so many different kinds of music it is really hard to specify what my personal favourites would be. For my pieces I tend to choose minimalist, meditative, non-melody kind of stuff.

DD: Tell me more about image, about a process of generation of images. Even though they are abstract, there are different fields of origin as far as I could understand. For instance in the Red Light you have been using real footage while some other videos, like High Noon or Hang Ten Sunset looks computer generated?

KL: Yes, the images are always more or less abstract, although I would prefer to say I work with abstractions rather than abstract images.
Usually, I have an idea for the imagery, which I reduce to the smallest common denominator for recognition. You could say I try to extract the essence of the chosen motive. (Hence, maybe I work with Extraction instead of Abstraction! ;-) )
For example in my film Hang Ten Sunset, which is an abstraction of a sunset, I tried to examine just what it is in a sunset that is so fascinating and pleasing for the eye, and then peel off the layers of kitsch, sentimentality and art history, to make a "clean" image of the phenomena.
I create the films using a mixture of DV photage, Flash and After Effects animations. Hang Ten Sunset is all Flash animation, while High Noon is entirely made of DV photage, using a mosaic filter, and a lot of different layers.

DD: What kind of sensations you are interested to provoke in the spectator. Why do you think art - in this case your art - should provide a space for mental rest?
KL: We are living in a time where we have unpresedented amounts of visual/written information to process everyday. I think there is a need for imagery that is not 'understandable' or 'readable' in a traditional sense. I
think there is a need for cerebral rest, for a zone where you can let your mind drift, and in that way process the rest of the impressions you have received during the day.