Lucinda Chua Debuts Short Film “An Ocean”

Lucinda Chua Debuts "An Ocean" short film. The track is off the multi-artist's forthcoming album YIAN, available March 24th via 4AD
Lucinda Chua Photo by Yukitaka Amemiya

Lucinda Chua has shared the new song and accompanying self-directed short film, “An Ocean&quot the track is off her forthcoming debut solo album YIAN, available March 24th via 4AD.

The track, follows previous single “Echo” – a pop song about ancestral trauma, walking the line between respect for the past and the freedom to carve out a new future – “An Ocean” marks the starting point for the next chapter of ‘YIAN’, seeing Chua reconcile with the past and move their attention to the present in this emotionally raw and vulnerable track and short film. The ocean represents a simultaneous state of pressure and weightlessness for Chua, with the feeling of moving through and pushing against the resistance of the water embodying the way we express our “chi”, our energetic life force, through intentionality and movement. They sing of a yearning for love and belonging over delicate and minimal production: “When I look for your love, like I’m never enough / I feel the calling from the ocean, the ocean my friend”. The music video, directed by Chua and shot on-location with cinematographer Milo Van Giap during an artist residency in Mallorca in the freezing December cold, embodies this “surrendering of the ego”. Chua stares unflinchingly into the lens as she sings.

“YIAN” (燕), means swallow in Chinese, and is part of “Siew Yian,” the name given to Chua by their parents to preserve her connection with her Chinese heritage. Just as the migratory songbird lives between places, so did Chua, the artist living in the in- between of the English, Malaysian and Chinese cultures that make up their heritage. In the absence of Mandarin as a mother tongue, music became a way to express the parts of herself that couldn’t be described in words; “YIAN” emerged as a way to heal.

A deeply introspective and fully realized vessel of creative expression (Chua self-produced and engineered eight of the ten tracks), “YIAN” emerges as less an album than a worldview, a commitment to learning and uncovering one’s own selfhood honed over Chua’s lifelong reconciliation with their own personal history and identity.

Through this process she found new language through which to express her experiences, language which lay in the practices she developed and the creative community with whom she built solidarity along the process: co-authoring visual identities with main collaborators Tash Tung, Jade Ang Jackman and Nhu Xuan Hua and set designers Lydia Chan, Jonquil Lawrence and Erin Tse. Chua also constructed the album’s physical language through dance with movement directors Chantel Foo and Duane Nasis, this expression shown most vividly through the short film made for “Echo,” out today.

Pre-order YIAN by Lucinda Chua HERE


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