V Premiere: Remi Lewis Radiates in ‘No Escape’

V Premiere: Remi Lewis Radiates in ‘No Escape’

V Premiere: Remi Lewis Radiates in ‘No Escape’

Remi Lewis leads us through a Barbie-inspired universe straight from her inner world

Remi Lewis leads us through a Barbie-inspired universe straight from her inner world

Text: Kala Herh

Today just got a little sweeter. Pop-R&B newcomer Remi Lewis just dropped her latest single, ‘No Escape.” And with the release, she gifts fans with an accompanying music video. Remi taps into the creative energies of 3D artist and director Agusta Yr to create a scintillating-bubbly video complete with Barbie Dreamhouses and retro workout fits. “I've been following her for a while,” Remi gushed. “Super big fan and so I just reached out, I didn't think it was going to happen. But yeah, she was down and loved the idea.” To which Agusta chimed in, “The process has been great. I hope the video takes people out of their own day for however long it is – just to be immersed in something else that's so foreign to them.” Also involved in this project is long-time friend and artist Uzumaki. Best known for her faux fur art, Uzumaki transforms spaces and places into plush wonderlands. 

Effortlessly blending 90’s-inspired R&B and futuristic pop, the song delves into the nuances of intimate relationships. In this song, Remi is trapped in a relationship she can’t escape – a feeling some of us may resonate a little too well with. With musical influences ranging from Gwen Stefani to Doja Cat, Remi Lewis fully encapsulates Gen Z and its cohort, those eager and ready to merge the contemporary with the vintage.  

We caught up with Remi and Agusta on set, where they both shared their creative process, inspirations and plans for the future. Keep reading to get a glimpse into the inner world of Remi Lewis. 

V MAGAZINE: Hi Remi! Congratulations on your single, "No Escape." What were some themes that you wanted to explore?

REMI LEWIS: It's very picture perfect, like Barbie, but in a way where it's kind of retro housewife. That was like kind of surreal. So yeah, that was the vibe I was going for. And I'm working with Agusta and she's got a real dollhouse and she's going to put me in it.  And then we're also working with this other female artist Uzumaki. She's a young Dominican female artist she does fur textile rooms.

V: And where did this concept of a housewife, a Barbie come from?

RL: The first line is literally "picture perfect." It just came to me. I was like, I just see myself in a box. Almost like creepy but not creepy but cute at the same time. I don't know if you remember there's the Barbie workout video and it was kind of retro, Jane Fonda-y. I love like the 80s in the 70s. So I wanted to incorporate that. 

V: And is this a character or something you've pulled from real life experience? 

RL: I feel like I can always kind of like get myself into character, which I'm doing in this shoot. I'm channeling me as a doll. And sometimes people told me that they're like, 'Oh, you look like a doll.' Or like, 'You remind me of the Bratz doll or whatever.' So that was already one of my like personas.

V: And how did this collab with Agusta come to be? 

RL: I've been following her for a while. Super big fan and so I just reached out, I didn't think it was going to happen. But yeah, she was down and loved the idea. And then we just like elaborated on it together.

V: And Agusta, how's the process been working with Remi so far?

AGUSTA YR: The process has been great. We've seen eye to eye on the whole thing. She sent me the song and I immediately had this idea of a Barbie who can't escape this Barbie world. And Remi is in this relationship that she can't escape and it all sort of just worked together. Sent it to Remi and Remi loved it. And it's just been really easy, going back and forth and bouncing ideas off one another.

V: Can you bring us through your process of creation and how you make 3D images? 

AY: So especially with 3D and stuff like that, I like to have all my sets, at least like planned out ahead of time. So when it comes to filming, it's easier to know how to set up where to place Remi in green screen so I can easily drop her in post. And I have these two girls that I work with called Aspectiers that do like 3D sets for me. It all sort of integrates and comes to life in post. 

V: Who are your musical inspirations? Also do you pull from certain periods? 

RL: I love like all the Y2K R&B and pop like Gwen Stefani, Aaliyah. And then I also love like Doja Cat, Kali Uchis – all the good iconic female artists. I love the female empowered female artists. 

V: And I read that you were modeling and into fashion before. What made you want to transition between, like fashion and modeling to music? How have you navigated that shift? 

RL: Well, I've always done music. That was even before I started modeling, but I was more reserved, shy songwriter in the house, that kind of thing. Then I started going to the studio, collaborating with different people. Just gaining confidence and coming in as a creative – I'm not just a face, you know? So everything kind of just came together. And luckily, I know so many creatives that helped me. 

V: What about your background, Agusta? How did you get into 3D imaging? 

AY: I was studying photography and got really bored with how flat everything was. And so I started doing video. And then from there, I started doing 3D and that was one of the first things that I did that fully challenged me and forced me to learn a lot of new things and new techniques and new programs and everything, which I really enjoyed doing. And I think the possibilities with 3D and digital are endless. It like sort of takes us out of this realm of being only able to do a certain thing in real life versus being wherever you want to be in 3D

V: How has your upbringing, and being in New York City influenced the music you're making now, Remi? 

RL: Just like constantly being surrounded by so many creatives, having supportive friends. Like LAAMS I work in, I'm constantly able to have that creative outlet, and just being around people who are supportive and hype me up.

V: What do you hope that your music does for people?

RL: I want people to feel like that bitch – regaining confidence, being confident. I struggled a lot with insecurities about my music and just putting my art out there. But I just had to get over it. Do what you want. Don't care. 

V: Agusta, what do you share with people who see your art and who see this video?

AY: I hope the video takes people out of their own day for however long it is – just to be immersed in something else that's so foreign to them. I know there's so many things that I've seen and watched where it's taken me from having a really shitty day into this like magical fantastical world. 

V: And then the last question: what are your plans for the future?

RL: I have a few singles lined up after this one. So just keep putting up music, do shows, and then an EP followed by that.

Credits: Directed & Edited by Agusta Yr Produced by No Agency New York BTS photography - Siena Saba Stylist - Mateux Palacio Hair - Jet Keefe Make up - Niohuru Director of Photography - Cyrus Duff Set Design - Jimmy Tagliaferri 3D World Design - Aspik Tears Thanks to - Be Electric Studios & Hand Held Films

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