‘Unravel Me’ by Sabrina Claudio​

— Nix Thérèse

I wish I was more a disciple of the gut. My anxiety has a way of pinging around my body to signal shifts, and too often I ignore it ’til the ping has built up to pure thunder under my skin. When I encounter an ease in responding to a feeling, I’m envious, ‘Unravel Me’ is no exception. Claudio croons, “Our days are numbered, wired, and I’m tired of it. I know you’re trying but you’ll never unravel me.” It’s such a hard sentiment to pitch: I want to be known fully, but not by you. She knows that there’s no pleasure to be found in conquest, no joy in being cracked open by the wrong hands. The intensity of the other’s gaze and desire only makes that space singe more with tension, so much so that the entire connection feels fated instead of fluid. I don’t envy the partner in their desire to get close to a sun that wants to retract the little warmth she’s felt, pulling back into herself saying “maybe I should unravel to myself first.” But I also don’t envy her cage, the slow tick of time down one corridor towards no favorable arrival. Despite effort, no one’s destined to fall open for you. If the progression feels stunted, why not shift—or in this case, end—course?

The video is drenched in warm, golden tones that draw the eye, darknesses emanating only from Claudio’s shock of lightly tousled hair, butterflies, and the flowers pitched against her skin—anything that could grow and take on life. Yet, her near constant smolder when making eye contact complicates the landscape: it’s hard to not feel torched & pushed further out than the closely panned camera wants us to believe. I consider how this floor-length gown wouldn’t be as evocative without her poured in. Its folds couldn’t breathe and sway on a hanger. It’s a shell made luxe by its center. To keep up the appearances of vulnerability without actually revealing is the dress without its body. How fitting that she forgoes this to sprawl over sand and remember her skin.


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