Seraphina Theresa

Artist spotlight: Seraphina Theresa by Sergio Díaz De Rojas

By Amanda Nordqvist

Over the last few years, German artist Seraphina Theresa has created numerous astonishing works of art, using several creative outlets such as photography, drawing, and, as of late, music. Currently based in Düsseldorf, Seraphina creates art focused mainly on nature and self-portraits, often simultaneously, and offers an insightful look at the world she has created for herself – a world in which she flourishes.

Seraphina’s drawings range from abstract to minimalistic but mostly display a lighter side to the artist – likewise, her dreamy collages dwell on the brighter side of the spectrum, all soft curves and gentle shapes. However, it is with her photography, either hauntingly grim or blissfully light-hearted, the intense intimacy of Seraphina’s art is made perfectly clear – she hides nothing, shies away from nothing, and appears completely un-afraid to shine a light on the darkest parts of life.

It is this contrast of dark and bright that seems to me the core theme in a lot of her work, and a big part in what makes her art so intriguing; still, her art is constantly growing and changing, made obvious by the drastic differences in her projects, Le temps, la vieillesse et la mort and Phase 3 - Wie es an uns zerrt, published only a couple of months apart, yet displaying and evoking completely separate emotions.

Instead of drawing inspiration from any particular outside source, Seraphina prefers to look inwards – to Hooligan Magazine she said, in regards to her collaboration with composer Sergio Díaz de Rojas, “[…] it is more about the ways I understand and experience life itself which make me do the things I do”, and that shows in her work. The art Seraphina creates – whether it be music, poetry, photography – is unabashedly personal, but relatable all the same, and frankly unnerving in its complete, uncensored authenticity. 

Take a look at her beautiful website and keep up with her work on Instagram, TumblrFacebook and Flickr.

 

The morning is a river by Sergio Díaz De Rojas and Seraphina Theresa by Sergio Díaz De Rojas

By Amanda Nordqvist

His latest release is bursting with eclectic melodies and proud intimacy, and this might well be the cheeriest we’ve ever seen him — Sergio Diaz de Rojas’ new EP, The Morning is a River, allows us into another chapter of the artist’s world, showing undeniable growth and a braver,  more experimental phase.

In der Sonne flimmert staubige Luft is such a grand introduction that even after several listens, I am still equally floored by the dignity and splendor of this one track. Throwing me back and forth between hope and desperation, it makes me feel as though the ground is disappearing beneath my feet, and I can’t stop repeating it, over and over and over.

When, eventually, I am ready to move on, Flores de Papel begins at a slower pace and moves like the ocean, a hypnotizing momentum – the muted, shimmery track allows for the terrifying feeling of being exposed, left half-open, waiting to be sewn back together. It appears before me like a friend, grabbing my hand, gently tugging me into a different world where the rain pounding on the window doesn’t have to sound like melancholy.

Ich bin Himmel, wenn ich den Himmel liebe, instead, feels unfathomably real in its slow, uncomplicated gloom, a commentary on the unavoidable, telling me to lean steadily into the wind, and wait for the storm to abate – then I am taken back to shaky childhood movies, as Fliedernacht und Birkensaum (Traum) reminds me of endless summer nights and self-inflicted sorrow, the unwillingness to let go of tonight even with the promise of morning. An unbearable feeling of nostalgia is what I am left with as the EP ends, and so hurriedly I put it on repeat, and let myself be washed over with its grandeur again, and again, and again. 

 

Music video premiere: Ich bin Himmel, wenn ich den Himmel liebe by Sergio Díaz De Rojas

By Blake Parker

The music video for Ich bin Himmel, wenn ich den Himmel liebe, taken from the collaboration between Sergio Díaz De Rojas and Seraphina Theresa, The morning Is a river, brings about lulled emotions and soft memories. The piece, visually and musically, feels like an afternoon in one’s adolescence when they were alone in the house; waiting for something or someone, not doing anything but not doing nothing either. The project evokes a kind of limbo —even a meditative state— where wandering around the house affords glimpses into little beauties otherwise unnoticed, and the act of non-doing creates in itself an internal peacefulness.

Sergio’s piano, inspired by the tentative improvisations of Seraphina on the same instrument, is full and wholly satisfying to the ear. While the chords and melodies wander back and forth with easygoing pace, one aspect stands out against many other piano pieces of this nature. The richness of low notes that move as their own line of melody is a rare treat, as all too often pianists seem to shy from the lower notes on the instrument for the purposes of melodies.

Seraphina’s visual works blend together video and photo elements in the same, simple medium. Moments of the music video may offer thoughtful atmospheric shots, while other moments focus acutely on a detail or smaller, still work. The shots in which she appears flow beautifully with the atmospheric ones, as the human form in the frame melts into the same inanimate and dreamy backgrounds.

An experiment I tried with this piece was to listen first, with my eyes closed; then watch, without audio. If the music struck me emotionally I would open my eyes to peek for a second, and if the visuals struck me similarly, I would turn the volume up for a split second. While certainly an unorthodox way to view a music video, it was a truly impactful experience that exhibited even further the beauty of this project as a collaborative work. Whatever way you may view this video, you are sure to finish with a lighter conscience and —if even slightly— more of a smile than before.