Adidas Originals Launches ARKYN with #TLKS

Adidas Originals Launches ARKYN with #TLKS

V caught up with musician-photographer Syv de Blare about her upcoming debut EP and her definition of "Original."

V caught up with musician-photographer Syv de Blare about her upcoming debut EP and her definition of "Original."

Text: Stella Pak

Adidas Originals recently hosted #TLKS in New York City to celebrate the launch of a female-focused silhouette, the Arkyn shoe. Poet and writer Cleo Wade hosted a panel discussion featuring singer-songwriter Kelela, vocalist and songwriter Ian Isiah, artist Ana Kras, and photographer/musician Syv de Blare to share their multi-faceted views and approach to creativity and individuality in the digital era. We had a chance to interview Syv de Blare after the discussion to chat about her upcoming EP Liquescent, the follow-up to her last single, "Crash" back in 2016.

Your image for "Crash" was very dark and sensual with a hazy influence of Grace Jones. How has your style evolved since?

It’s definitely evolved and it’s in that field and it’s a continuation of those themes. I had to take a bit of time off from music. My mom was fighting cancer and she happened to survive so I’m really grateful, but it did impact my art making and my process. I’m always going to be dark and I’m always going to be exploring the idea of shadows and what that means in regards to my emotive output. But today, it’s drenched in hope and a type of light that will definitely be shining through.

Have you discovered new talent or peers through social media you’ve collaborated with?

I’m keen on collaborating with people I meet in real life and are part of communities I’ve grown up with. I had a song come out in Lunice’s album CCLX called "Blackout", and that was so exciting because we’ve collaborated since high school and it spoke to our friendship and to our collaborative process. I would be keen on collaborating with anyone on the panel today. Kelela is a true performer and a visionary. I’m really excited for Blood Orange’s new album coming out.

What are some of your sonic influences at this moment and how did you discover them?

Right now I dive back into sounds that I grew up with. I used to go to a lot of violin shows. I’ve really gone back to the opera. The Met is having an amazing season, classical composers like Thomas Adès, Renaissance Pavane music. It’s quite outside of my scope but I can still relate to the structure of the music. Also, a French artist named Mylène Farmer, she’s really groundbreaking. Moodymann is a house legend. I’m regenerating these bonds that I have and sounds that I grew up with. It’s not necessarily that you listen to especially like Wagner or Rachmaninoff, but that’s what I grew up with. And I think the way I do write my music is quite specific in scope. There have been a lot of references to opera and it’s a realm that I’m feeding myself on.

How did you discover these composers and references?

My mother. My father as well, I also did opera singing. My background was in violin and eventually opera. We’d go every weekend playing violin, so there’s a strong connection. It’s specific. But it’s also in the arrangement. It’s such a spectacle. From the design on stage, from the chapters, and from the way the arc is written resembles a lot to my work.

You talked about this a bit during the panel discussion, but how do you feel when you release your music or image into the digital abyss?

It’s definitely been a struggle and something I need to work on. How much do I want to share, how do I want to share it, how much of it is this Syv persona and how much of it is myself? It’s something I’m slowly grasping on. There’s this fear but at this point, there’s a warrior-like energy and I’m so ready to share my truth and share my craft.

Where do you find moments of comfort?

Moments of comfort really come through dancing. That’s my biggest relief. That’s really where I find inspiration. I grew up starting to go to clubs and after-hours, and going to parties to dance. I’d come down to New York from Montreal just to go to these parties and dance or run away. It’s really essential to my practice. Also singing—there’s not a moment where I feel constrained, whether it’s singing at a party with a friend or free styling or writing new music. That’s where I feel most comfortable. And lastly, my bed. I’m very lucky to have a very comfortable cocoon. I need that. I think a lot of New Yorkers need that, a healthy private life to recharge the batteries.

What can we expect from you debut EP?

The album is called Liquescent. It is going to come out sometime in the summer. We’re working on the video for the single. It’s exciting because we’ll be working with a lot of creatives from New York and people I consider family.

What does Original mean to you?

We live in the postmodern society where being authentic or being original are almost impossible to be. I think a lot of people fear on rearticulating ideas. I think being original is believing and advocating the differences. It’s about accepting them and maybe battling them and coming to a point where there’s a unique element, and in that you find your voice and your originality.

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