Antony and the Johnsons have made a career out of collaborating with high-profile musicians who aren’t afraid to get weird, including composer Phillip Glass and space goddess Bjork.
Directed by photographer and video artist Nabil Elderkin, “Cut the World” takes place within an office setting of a world gone mad—although it could almost as easily just be ours. The video opens with a well-dressed, craggy-faced Dafoe staring out the window of a high-rise in what one would assume is a contemplative reverie. This act soon proves contagious when his colleague (Carice van Houten) does the same thing. Ultimately, though, it turns out she has a lot more on her mind.
“Cut the World” is the title track of Antony and the Johnsons’ live album, which is out in stores on August 7. The previously unreleased song was originally written for the opera The Life and Death of Marina Abramović, a tribute to the renowned performance artist. (Willem Dafoe also appeared in Life and Death.) Although Abramović is only onscreen briefly, she gives van Houten’s character the kind of look that could make someone cry.