UN­DER THE IN­FLU­ENCE

Anna Calvi's Heroes And In­spi­ra­tions

Q (UK) - - Anna Calvi -

Ma­rina Abramović

Ser­bian per­for­mance artist who, in 2010, com­pleted her 700- hour show The Artist Is Present where she perched in mu­se­ums star­ing peo­ple out. Calvi, a fan, in­cor­po­rates into her stage show sim­i­larly starey mo­ments, choos­ing the clos­est au­di­ence mem­bers to pen­e­trate with her gaze. “Those are the best mo­ments, it feels pow­er­ful, in­ti­mate, vul­ner­a­ble and ele­men­tal. It’s just ours, me and this per­son.”

Scott Walker

Calvi only found her pow­er­house vo­cal in her mid- 20s; as it grew she em­u­lated Scott Walker. “He’s just in­cred­i­ble. Singing, for me, is the clos­est I have to be­ing com­pletely lib­er­ated. Es­pe­cially as this shy per­son, with such a small speak­ing voice, to have this power within me. It’s like hav­ing a su­per­power, like be­ing able to fly!”

David Hock­ney

Swim­ming Pool, from Hunter, is an ethe­real, sonic homage to Hock­ney’s pool­side paint­ings. She loves their “in­no­cence”, how the gay men he por­trayed seemed so happy and free (even if, in the ’ 60s, they weren’t). “I’ve never seen one in real life but they’re in your con­scious­ness, so beau­ti­ful.”

John Len­non And Yoko Ono

Mak­ing Hunter she re­turned to John Len­non/ Plas­tic Ono Band ( 1970), where Len­non dab­bles in pri­mal scream ther­apy. “He was let­ting go of ev­ery­thing, scream­ing, his hid­den an­i­mal­is­tic side. That in­spired me to just un­leash my voice.” She at­tempted to record with Yoko Ono re­cently, un­til Ono fell sud­denly ill. “I was, ‘Just do it on your iPhone!’ Maybe it’ll hap­pen in the fu­ture. I al­ways thought Yoko was just the coolest.”

Madonna

“My job isn’t pop mu­sic but I have spe­cial love for ’ 80s Madonna. I re­mem­ber be­ing 10 and think­ing, ‘What is this?’ And the fash­ion! She’s done a lot more than I feel peo­ple give her credit for. Young peo­ple now see her as this old lady. She was badass!”

Deep im­pact: the “in­cred­i­ble” Scott Walker.

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