Evvol Take Back The Power In Showcasing Lesbian Intimacy

Evvol proclaims the beauty and authenticity of queer intimacy in the visuals for their latest single Release Me.

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Under-representation of queer women in media has been around for a long time and Berlin-based duo Evvol look to remedy this in the visuals for their latest track Release Me.

Evvol are a dark wave duo consisting of Irish woman Julie Chance and her Australian partner Jane Arnison.

“The inspiration for the video came as an extension of the idea of ‘release’.

Speaking on the lyrics for Release Me, the duo explains, “musically we wanted to create something that had a more upbeat vibe juxtaposed against darker lyrical content.

“We’ve actually had this song for a couple of years now and always wanted to do something with it so it was exciting to set it free.

“The inspiration for the video came as an extension of the idea of ‘release’. We had wanted to work with Matt for a while and love his sensual approach to explicit content – it all just came together at the right moment.”

“We don’t really want [the queer community] to take any specific message or meaning other than for female queers to feel represented.”

It was great to be in the presence of people who are on top of their craft – there is an ease and calmness

The video for Release Me was co-directed by Chance and Matt Lambert who is well known for his queer photography and film-making in which he aims to portray realism and intimacy. Julie and Jane say working with Matt was “a dream”.

“We love Matt. He is a great friend and also a super talented director. It was great to be in the presence of people who are on top of their craft – there is an ease and calmness that impacts everyone and results in really great performances from everyone involved.”

“It’s nice to take the power back against a male gaze of what females do and say, more specifically the notions of lesbian sex that have been countlessly misrepresented in film and other media.

Women’s bodies are so often fetishised and as something that should be hidden away. Evvol says playing a part in countering this narrative has been an “empowering” experience.

“It’s nice to take the power back against a male gaze of what females do and say, more specifically the notions of lesbian sex that have been countlessly misrepresented in film and other media.

“It’s also nice to take the power back against the conservative shameful led perspective that sex is bad or dark and should be hidden away – we present sex happening in a fun, relaxed and community setting far away from ideas of shame and secrecy. That was important for us.”

whilst also saying ‘fuck you’ to the censors we also felt fear and shame and had to process all those conflicting emotions

Upon release of the video, they initially faced censorship from video hosting sites with YouTube declining to host it.

“Let’s take the specific moment when this video was censored – we talked about how it triggered a regression, a kind of reversal of all our personal work we have done to de-program ourselves against the concept that what we are and what we do is wrong – whilst also saying ‘fuck you’ to the censors we also felt fear and shame and had to process all those conflicting emotions. So it still has a lasting effect on our psyche.”

We are inspired by everything – the world around us, current events, our peers, each other

The pair attribute Peaches as an inspiration for this video, as someone who has been confronting the mainstream media about female sexuality for decades.

“We are inspired by everything – the world around us, current events, our peers, each other. Peaches was a specific inspiration for this video. Also, we both love music and always listen and dig out new sounds and listen together and send each other stuff.”

There has been a recent feminist movement where we are beginning to see women taking sexuality into their own hands. For instance, Jannelle Monae’s recent visuals to accompany PYNK depict a utopian universe where an all women cast celebrate their love for the “pink, like the inside of your [wink], baby,” or like “the tongue going down (maybe).”

Julie and Jane are hopeful that this will open the door to “a more open, diverse and understanding society.

“When alternative lifestyles become more normalized and less fetishised, people don’t care so much and it makes society a more safe environment for those that are different.”

Could we have a video like this 10 years ago and have it posted on such big media sites?

On how the queer community can support queer artists, Evvol says “we push back like we always do. We organize, we assemble and we shout. Whatever form that shout may take. And changes are happening. Could we have a video like this 10 years ago and have it posted on such big media sites? We’re not so sure.”

Along with the gift of this beautiful and powerful piece of work, Jane and Julie say if they could gift every queer woman with one thing it would be “EMANCIPATION FROM THE PATRIARCHY!!”

Watch the full video below and listen to Evvol on Spotify.

© 2018 GCN (Gay Community News). All rights reserved.

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