Katy Perry Channels Piet Mondrian in New Music Video

Katy Perry, "This Is How We Do" video still.

Katy Perry, aspiring art collector, has a new music video out for her latest single “This Is How We Do,” and it’s surprisingly artsy, heavily referencing Piet Mondrian.

The video opens with an old man sitting in front of a portrait of Perry hung in an art gallery, zooming in on the photo to reveal the singer attired as a modish 1960s-style housewife. Later in the song, Perry wears a shiny two-piece take on Yves Saint Laurent’s “Mondrian” day dress with matching shoes and hair, and dances in front of a blown up version of one of his color-blocked grid paintings. (This is not the first musical project to reference the De Stijl art movement, of which Mondrian was a leading member: the movement lent its name to the While Stripes’ second album.)

Katy Perry, "This Is How We Do" video promo.

Katy Perry, “This Is How We Do” video promo.

The video is a confusing melange of cartoon animations (including a twerking ice cream cone), people floating around, paper food, and of course, Perry’s trademark wigs and over-the-top costumes. Most of the video is shot in front of a flat blue backdrop, which sometimes masquerades as a cloudy sky or the bottom of a swimming pool.

For some reason, there’s a hologram of Mariah Carey and a shot of Aretha Franklin in her infamous presidential inauguration hat. Perry also “gets her nails did all Japanesey” from Pee-wee Herman–suited backup dancer manicurists while sitting in an Arrested Development-style hand chair, a concept supposedly invented by Mexican artist and designer Pedro Friedeberg. Is is all some contemporary-art fueled hallucination on the part of the anonymous gallery goer from the video’s opening?

Katy Perry, "This Is How We Do" video still.

Katy Perry, “This Is How We Do” video still.

Perhaps the 29-year-old pop star was inspired by her well-known collaborations with Will Cotton (as artnet News reported, she was spotted taking a selfie with her portrait of her at the National Gallery), or her recent contribution to an album by artist Mark Ryden. Whatever the reason, Perry clearly has art on the brain.

Watch Katy Perry’s “This Is How We Do” video:


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