Lisson Gallery

Laure Prouvost's music video for 'Moving on' by Leonard Cohen

2 February 2020

Produced by NOWNESS in collaboration with Sony Music Canada and the Leonard Cohen Estate, Laure Prouvost has directed, shot and edited the music video for Cohen’s 'Moving on', a track from his last posthumous album, 'Thanks For The Dance'. The video walks in the footsteps of Cohen at his former home on Hydra, Greece, in this visual elegy by Prouvost and collaborator Ciarán Wood.

Prouvost made a pilgrimage to Cohen’s home for the video which uses first-person filming to give the viewer a sense that they are walking in the musician’s footsteps, across an island mostly unmarked by the passage of time, and hugged by the deep blue Aegean Sea. “The island felt timeless, floating in quietness with no cars,” says the artist, who captured the donkeys that sometimes still provide transportation around Hydra. “I felt in union with all that was there.”

Cohen recorded the elegiac “Moving on” with its haunting Bouzouki tremolo intro as a tribute to his once romantic partner and muse, Marianne Ihlen, after he learned of her death in 2016. In quintessential Prouvost style, the artist-director alludes to this romance in her film by disassociating imagery and meaning with an idiosyncratic playfulness. “The clementine means love. The taste of its liquidity, sweet and sour, it trickles with life,” says Prouvost, who places the fruit as a central motif within her work. “The clementine is also connected with memories of my Grandma’s clementine tree where we used to pick the fresh fruit, spreading and swallowing love.”

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