To observe the release of Thom Yorke’s new video for “Last I Heard (…He Was Circling The Drain)” from his album “ANIMA,” ANIMA Technologies opened its Los Angeles offices with what is described as “a three-day immersive first look event.” According to the announcement, the five-minute short film, made at the Brooklyn-based experimental studio Art Camp, is set in a dream world inspired by fragments of Thom Yorke and Stanley Donwood’s imagination and made up of over 3000 hand-illustrated frames. The first clips of the film were shown throughout the ANIMA Technologies’ offices, on desktop monitors as well as a custom-constructed TV wall.
The installation, which coincided with Thom, Nigel Godrich & Tarik Barri a/k/a Tomorrow’s Modern Boxes’ live performances at Los Angeles’ Greek Theatre October 29 and 30, ended with the world premiere of the video, which you can watch below.
Art Camp commented on their process interpreting the song:
“Our first and last goal was to serve the feelings of the song and the record. Thom shared a list of visions with us, disconnected images from his dreams, and we expanded on it with visions from everyone who joined the video team, over a dozen of us. At its core, our intention was to communicate the experience of feeling completely on your own, surrounded by people you see yourself in but don’t understand, who have lost their minds to the city and can’t see that you need their help.
“The process for making this animation was extremely iterative and cyclical, and started from every direction at once. We experimented with clay sculpture and one-cent 3D horses, crowd simulations and charcoal dust, linear storytelling and abstract expression. We made the entire video and threw it away, made it again, threw it away, dozens of times. This of course was stressful but also beautiful.
“Our goal is to create work that is surprising to ourselves, that we don’t understand how it happened. A lot of that has to do with trusting in the collaborative process– finding a wavelength where everyone feels free to go crazy in their own way, and push for what they most believe in. Our values are constantly being tested and rewritten in pursuit of creating a community where people really do feel loose and free and safe. When it works the best, you end up with work that speaks in everyone’s voices and one voice.”