Lacuna: An Interpretation


Above is the video that I brought into class for liking its composition and mis-en-scene for our very first lesson of Lacuna, but the more that I watched and explored the music video, the more I became aware of it’s hidden meanings and visual constructs that alluded to a lacuna; a void, a gap, an omitted space, through strange meteors, levitating stones, caved doors, car changing colours, burning buildings, just to name a few.


Directed by Bison, Bonobo’s music video for his song Kerala features an intense repetition of visuals paired with a simplicity of notes that increases throughout in reverberation as the song skips, pauses, distorts and jitters. To me, it is reminiscent of a haunting and disorientating mental exploration and trip as the repetition of the sounds act in an automated process, mutating from being somewhat peaceful initially, to something that puts the mind on edge as you get more engrossed in the clip.


Throughout, the viewer becomes so fixated on the main character, that you lose sight of all the strange interactions and oddities happening around her, that force you into a world or state of limbo almost, a place where reality no longer surfaces.

The song which features on the Migration album details and illustrates “how one person will take an influence from one part of the world and move with that influence and affect another part of the world.”[1] This somewhat more imaginary place of Kerala is then a personification of the main character’s mind and therefore, a lacuna in itself during her period of glitchy psychosis.

The use of mechanical looping and glitching is what creates this idea of an endless, all-consuming void and missing space in between each sequence. Bison says that they “… were fascinated by the limitations that you have with moving image, and how you can play with things like time and colour. Generally I like the misappropriation of technology […] That’s the most exciting thing you can do – take something and use it for something that wasn’t quite what it was intended for.”[2]


Not only the post-production and video techniques, but the character development and narrative inherent in the music video explores the idea of a lacuna in the mind. She is in a constant state of panic, on the brink of an encapsulating insanity where the blurring lines between the real and the fake are more prominent that ever. She is completely and helplessly losing her mind where nothing in this world is within her control. This constant battle and fight against an unknown consciousness is truly powerful.




[1] Moore, S. 2016, Bonobo announces new album, ‘Migration’ – NME, NME. viewed 23 March 2017, <;.

[2] Brookman, J. 2016, Exclusive: The photography roots of Bonobo’s Kerala, from director Bison, British Journal of Photography. viewed 14 June 2017, <;.



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