Rodarte is a fashion company started 6 years ago by two friends who went to UC Berkley together. One studied art history while the other focused on literature and the Modern novel. But I don’t know them as a fashion line, they’ve created much more than just clothing. I’ve come to know them for their gorgeously produced short films such this one, and the previous Todd Cole collab film, 2010: A Space Odyssey, which I also highly recommend. I truly think that not having gone to school for fashion or marketing has allowed them to create a unique vision for themselves without constraint of the way things “should” be. I love that you can watch this short for it’s aesthetic beauty and not once feel like someone is pushing clothing. You come away with a warm feeling of wonder and not a sales pitch or tag line, which only makes me want something even more.
As for the story behind the film, it takes you on a brief journey of discovery through the historic Baldwin House set in the oil fields of Baldwin Hills. Here, Elle Fanning’s dress becomes chameleon and takes on the atmosphere of each new room. Thoughtful inspection of each new space leads her into the garage of the estate where she encounters a sun-like orb. Basking in its glow and warmth, she offers herself to it. The storytelling is very loose, and with the addition of an ambient score provided by Deerhunter, you feel like the whole thing is a lucid dream.
Read more and watch it larger on Nowness.
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Think or Smile | Nathaniel Whitcomb © 2011