Norwegian singer-songwriter and producer Charlotte Dos Santos released her astonishing debut album, Cleo, this summer on Fresh Selects. On her first full-length, Charlotte explores a restless, myriad vision of R&B that speaks to her own dynamic range of influences and rich cultural background. We’re honored to premiere Charlotte Dos Santos’ music video for Cleo-cut “King of Hearts,” one of the more bewildering tracks on her audacious debut.
Using a 16mm Bolex camera and found film “that was probably older than us”, directors Marina Oriente and Tiago Mena Abrantes sought to shatter illusions of reality by capturing Charlotte throughout of a series of prime NYC locations like The Cloisters in Upper Manhattan. The found film adds another layer of mysticism and mystery to the visuals, slightly obscuring its subjects with a veil of grainy haze, like looking through the past. Watch it above.
Read a statement from Charlotte Dos Santos about the “King of Hearts” video and the symbol of Cleo:
“The concept of Cleo emerged during my time spent in Valencia, Spain. She is a kingdom ruler, a royal figure, a queen and empress who represents independence, femininity, power and fearlessness. I wanted to address the common misconception that people of color were not present in medieval and renaissance Europe. I wanted to reclaim a part of history by including a character which had been silenced and removed. Here she is presented in a chapter of forgotten history as a part of the progressive sensuous culture that was flourishing in mediterranean Europe, one our people are rarely depicted in.
This is my imagination and my reality. It should not be an abnormal or strange to see a person of color related to this era, especially a woman of color. This is not odd to me, nor should it be odd to anyone.
I pulled inspiration from a few of my favorite directors such as Ingmar Bergmann, Sergei Parajanov and photographer Tad Wakamatsu.”
Listen to Cleo below.