Beauty Reborn

Tendance Brute, the new digital short by Swiss-born, New York-based filmmaker Maria Burns, begins in the dark. Hands creep into the frame and a model appears, Agnes Nabuurs. She is beautiful, certainly, but also fierce and feral looking, as if a cat had metamorphosed into human form and is exploring its newfound long limbs. As the film progresses, Nabuurs’ outfits become more developed and á la mode, but she does not lose her wildness. Instead, the extremity of her look—the horned shoulders, her spike-soled boots, artfully unkempt hair, kohl-rimmed eyes, and, later, her elaborate headpiece—make her seem even more alien. An exploration of fashion’s constant search for an abnormal beauty.