Björk’s astonishing new video was shot from inside her mouth

The Jesse Kanda-directed masterpiece for ‘Mouth Mantra’ has arrived, premiered exclusively on Dazed

If the past year has seen a shift in the revolutionary possibilities of what a music video can be, standing at the forefront of this shift have been two agenda-setting artists: Björk and Jesse Kanda.

Björk’s uncompromising vision has made way for two visuals for this year’s heart-breaking masterpiece Vulnicura, including the panoramic “Stonemilker” and the cinematic cave adventure that was “Black Lake”. Similarly, Kanda has been shaking up the arts with his distinctive, alien-like aesthetic and grotesque, forward-thinking collaborations with producer Arca.

Now, the pair have offered up their first ever collaboration in the shape of Björk’s brilliantly claustrophobic video for “Mouth Mantra”, directed by Kanda. The video – which will soon be available in 360° – is filmed from inside the Icelandic icon’s mouth, her tongue and teeth warped and twisted so they seem to take on a life of their own. Towards the end, Björk dances manically, her limbs encased in white ribbons.

In their own words:

Björk : "i am so extremely grateful to jesse to be up for going on this journey .... it was brave of him to take it on and i feel spoiled having witnessed him grow , making hi tech mouth models and inventing cameras all to match a little therapeutic song about the throat . his dedication and devotion is overwhelming !!!

i am especially grateful for those sassy dancefloor moments we managed to squeeze in there aswell : true magic !!"

Jesse Kanda: “If there’s one thing I’d like for people to take away from this video, it's the power of vulnerability. That is what Björk’s album Vulnicura is all about to me, and hopefully this video reflects that. It’s about having the courage to express yourself and seeing yourself in that mirror. Doing something that scares the shit out of you and sharing it, growing from it, spreading love and courage to others and making the world a warmer place to be and relate to each other.

Making this video was as much a terrifying horrific experience to me as it was a dream come true and pure ecstasy. It was a year-long roller coaster which triggered and ran parallel to some major growth in my own self as well. I have no words to express how grateful I am to Björk for this extremely intimate creation and her love. 

Thank u everyone on the team who made this possible - the miraculous John Nolan and his team for the animatronics, beautiful warrior Inge Grognard for the face art and support, ever loving Juliette and Hannah at Prettybird UK, beautiful warm womb crew in Iceland and London, everyone at Dentsu Lab Tokyo and Rhizomatiks Research, lovely Ellie (Ellie Grace Cumming – Fashion Director of AnOther Man) and Pegah (Pegah Maleknejad – Fashion Assistant), Derek and Andrew at One Little Indian, and my sister Alejandro of course for the beats and looking at it million times with me. Also my computer for not melting down!”

For German users, the video can be viewed here

“Mouth Mantra” will be released on Björk’s own VR app in coming months, alongside "Black Lake and "Stonemilker"

“Vulnicura Strings” is now available on vinyl via One Little Indian Recordings. Click here to purchase