Still from Kanye West’s ‘Famous’ video

Is Kanye West’s ‘Famous’ Video Genius or Insane?

Kanye West’s controversial new video ‘Famous’ have fans and critics saying all sorts for its unreal camerawork and ‘depiction of nonconsensual nudity’. Read more below

Still from Kanye West’s ‘Famous’ video
Still from Kanye West’s ‘Famous’ video

Kanye West surprises us yet again with the release of his “Famous” video. The clip, filmed on a grainy night-vision camera that roams voyeuristically over waxwork bodies, depicts 12 of the world’s most recognizable faces laying in one bed together. That’s not it, everyone was naked, their limbs barely covered by a gargantuan white sheet. On the left-hand side was Donald Trump intermingled with a comatose Anna Wintour. Next to them is Rihanna, who lies next to her former boyfriend and abuser Chris Brown. Even Ray-J, who famously filmed a sex tape with Kanye’s wife Kim Kardashian, makes the cut. Vincent Desiderio, the artist whose “Sleep” painting inspired the visuals, called it “brilliant and daring”. Lena Dunham, on the other hand, branded it “sickening”. What do you guys think?

Some said it is “unsettling and brilliant”, Vanity Fair called it “his most thought-provoking work yet”, and The Verge described the video as a “spectacularly bizarre and enthralling experience”. Incidentally, the most positive review of the work comes from Vincent Desiderio himself, an artist clearly thrilled that his original haunting tableau had provided a source of inspiration. In an article published by W Magazine, Desiderio gushed that the visuals were an “extraordinary gift”, unprecedented proof of “the power of the artistic imagination to transcend categorical expectations”.

Lena Dunham, claimed in a now-viral Facebook post that she felt “sad and unsafe and worried for the teenage girls who watch this and may not understand that grainy roving camera as the stuff of snuff films”.

West claims that he deliberately removed any trace of overt sexual connotation from the clip; his efforts, however, don’t stop this clip from appearing worryingly intrusive. These detailed waxworks have still been purpose-built, created by sculptors that no doubt scoured photos to ensure every inch of these naked likenesses was as realistic and detailed as possible. Their state of consciousness is ambiguous – are they asleep, comatose or unconscious? Dunham argued that these were the “prone, unconscious, waxy bodies of famous women, twisted like they’ve been drugged and chucked aside at a rager”.

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