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Simone Hooymans: In my animations I often visualize my worries about the state of the earth

A few days ago, we provided a review of the short animated music video "Farewell Glacier". Today, we bring you an interview with the creator Simone Hooymans, who, along with music composer Terje Isungset, among others, sheds light on what recording with ice instruments looks like.


Music video:


The video is a meditation of sounds, shapes and colors. The movement is in perfect balance with the music. Do viewers perceive the clip more as an emotional release or a critical warning?


Thank you! I think viewers perceive the animation both emotionally and as a conscious warning of global warming. I believe that the emotional response and the awareness of a need are deeply connected and trigger a reaction.


We also liked the connection between the human voice and the wind. The visual representation of sound. Tell us more about this idea of yours?


I had the idea of a visual cloud breath from the beginning when I first heard the song. I wanted to visualize the human breath that is warm and moist in the cold air around the glacier. Even with all the good intentions of the voice to save the glacier by singing a song of awareness, it will melt the glacier.



Do you feel responsible for music when you create its visual side?


It is for me at the utmost importance that the animation I make and the music are in balance, uplifting each other. It is therefore important to me that I believe in the music and know the musician. I have been working with musicians for many years. It is always an exciting and very rewarding collaboration.


The music for this music video was created using instruments made of ice. Can you tell us more about it? What does working with these unique instruments look like? How was the music recording process carried out?


Ice Music is Terje Isungset`s life work since 1999. The work using ice instruments is all about Nature. Nature is The Boss. All instruments are made out of ice and they will melt. Glaciers also do melt due to climate change.


There is a message in the music and the art that we do hope comes through to the listener. The recording session was taking place inside an igloo up high mountains of Norway. Igloos are perfect for ice music as they do have a stable temperature of 4 till 6 degrees below celsius and they are totally quiet. The main sound of the song is Terje`s Iceofone - a marimba-like instrument. Ice Only!


If you would like to learn more about playing musical instruments made of ice, you can visit the music composer's website - www.terjeisungset.no.


See how playing musical instruments made of ice looks like:


This video was created for an existing song. Can you briefly describe the process from the initial idea to the final result?


I have worked with the music of Terje Isungset before. I know his music style and his message very well. For this album I could choose a song of my own preference. A song that would speak to me the most for making animation. I chose “Farewell Glacier” because I had direct visuals in my head when I heard the song. While visualizing my idea on paper the animation unfolded itself. I work in that sense very intuitively.


With a video, you pay tribute to the enchanting beauty of glaciers. What other natural motifs inspire you?


In my animations I often visualize my worries about the state of the earth. When I was a child I found the world enormous and fascinating and felt myself very connected. My parents gave me an awareness of the beauty and strength of the earth and as I grew up I noticed that the same beauty and strength were getting endangered.


In 2019, I made an animation with producer Turid Rogne called “Earthfall”, about a disaster that destroys everything in its path, but from chaos glimpses a new beginning. In this animation I made avalanches and floods, but also showed the beauty of the landscape and even the beauty of the catastrophic disaster.


Nature has always been my source of inspiration. But I am also fascinated how we as human beings seem to get disconnected with our landscape over centuries and look at nature as if it is no longer part of us. I am often thinking about this and wonder how this is possible.



We know that you have already created several projects of this type of animation. It can be said that it is your signature style. How and when did you come up with it? Have you also experimented with other types of animation?


I am a visual artist making moving drawings. The content and meaning of my work is most important. I developed my animation style during many years with as a starting point my curiosity to how it would be if I would be able to enter my drawings and make a journey through my created universes.


What are your plans for the future?


I have a lot of different animation projects going on for the upcoming years. I am working on a new animation production with my producer Turid Rogne, titled “The perpetual tapestry” an experimental animation about bees and a collapsing world where all is connected by threads in a woven tapestry that keeps repeating itself.


I am also working on a new music video for the ambitious project Hidden Soul of the Fjord by the musicians Heidi Torsvik and Lazerus Winter. About all life deep under and high above the fjord, a tribute to the fjords of Norway. Next to the animation productions I am showing my work at exhibitions and film festivals. And recently I make permanent video installations and art works that are integrated in public spaces.



Thank you, Simone, for the interview, and we wish you much success in all your endeavors.


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