Stella McCartney has collaborated on a short film called “Curtains Up,” featuring director David Lynch, to celebrate the practice of transcendental meditation and filmmaking.
Created by Los Angeles-based creative studio Tête-à-Tête, which was founded by filmmaker Austin Lynch and artist Case Simmons, “Curtains Up” launches exclusively on nowness.com on Tuesday. The collaboration was created in support of the charitable works of the David Lynch Foundation, whose mission is to help prevent and eradicate the epidemic of trauma and toxic stress among at-risk populations through the Transcendental Meditation (TM) program in order to improve health, cognitive capabilities and performance in life.
The nine-minute short film is structured around the concept of a film-within-a-film with powerful images that show the movement and activity of life and nature through light and color, contrasted with the pulsing and sound of a film projector throughout. “Curtains Up” offers the viewers a space to reflect on the source of creativity, how transcendental meditation nurtures it, all while enlivening the self.
A follower and advocate of TM and the work of the David Lynch Foundation, McCartney is featured in a cameo in “Curtains Up.” The designer is joined by an eclectic ensemble cast of creative talents including actors Ashton Sanders, Sasha Lane, Lola Kirke and Tommy Dorfman; musicians Børns, Imaad Wasif and Sky H1; artist Petra Cortright; film projectionist Carolyn Funk; creative director Jenni Hensler, and Bob Roth, a leading TM teacher of 40 years and CEO of the David Lynch Foundation. All appear in states of meditation in their own natural space. Individuals around Los Angeles, who have benefited from the practice of TM as they overcome personal challenges, are also highlighted in the film.
“Transcendental Meditation is very much a personal sense of space and clarity for me,” said McCartney. “It is one of the most liberating things that I can do to find clarity, mindfulness and well-being. It is an incredible concept, for humanity that allows you be a better person, be more productive, more thoughtful and more calm. I believe in it so much that collaborating with the David Lynch Foundation in this film was a natural step. I’m a huge admirer of David, he’s an icon and a genius. He has such a dark calmness in everything that he does, his talent is just undeniable and I think that he’s made a true mark in the world of cinema and also in the world of mindfulness.”
David Lynch started practicing TM in 1973 and has been meditating every day since; the powerful and cinematic film provides insight into the technique that Lynch attributes to his success. Through the pairing of cutting-edge, computer-generated imagery, projected film, and narration from Lynch, inspired by his book “Catching the Big Fish,” “Curtains Up” aims to illustrate how the method is part of the creative process.
“When you dive within, the Self is there and true happiness is there. There’s a pure, huge, unbounded ocean of it. It’s bliss — physical, emotional, mental and spiritual happiness that starts growing from within,” said Lynch.
“This film is comprised of potent portraitures of artists, the mechanics of film projection, and painterly depictions of nature. Lynch’s words become a guide, navigating us along this celebration of personal transcendence and artistic creation,” said Austin Lynch and Simmons.