In early 2022, Switzerland Tourism invited the poet, visual artist, and filmmaker Julianknxx to conduct research and create work in four Swiss cities: Zürich, Geneva, Basel, and Lausanne. Out of this project came In A Dream We Are At Once Beautiful, a short film that examines the lines between fantasy and reality, and our ability to dream on our own terms.
Through a series of vignettes, the film plays with how nature and urbanity come together in each of the Swiss cities it takes as both subject and setting. Stanzas from Julianknxx’s poem “As Long As The Sun Lasts” punctuate long, slow-moving shots of ethereal locations and the characters who inhabit them. An original score developed from a collaboration between the Sierra Leone-born, London-based artist and the French-Senegalese musician anaiis serves as a backdrop to this 20-minute dreamscape, where people float, dance, and embrace stillness in unexpected metropolitan environments across Switzerland.
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As he merges his poetic practice with his work in film and performance, Julianknxx aims to engage in a form of existential inquiry that seeks to find ways of expressing the ineffable realities of human experiences while examining the structures in which we live. The cities of Switzerland prove to be the perfect setting for the artist to explore these concepts in In A Dream We Are At Once Beautiful, with their vibrant and varied cultural offerings including some of the world’s leading museums and art institutions; dazzling historic and modern architecture; bustling shopping districts; innovative gastronomy; and ready access to lakes, rivers, mountains, and other natural spaces.
“Swiss boutique cities like Zürich, Geneva, Lausanne, and Basel provide a wide range of art, culture, and architecture,” says Claudio Zemp, Director Americas of Switzerland Tourism. “Cultural offerings are found alongside proximity to nature. Through the lens of the extraordinarily perceptive and talented artist Julianknxx, Switzerland Tourism intends to cast a new light on Swiss cities.”
To explore Switzerland’s cities and cultural offerings, visit myswitzerland.com.