'Good Queen Bess' by Olivia Louvel

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Fascinated by the existence of two Queens ruling at the same time on a single island, within an extremely male dominated society in the 16th century, composer and artist Olivia Louvel explores the reign of Mary Queen of Scots Vs Elizabeth I and delivers her own singular transposition: Data Regina. Drawn to the life and writings of Mary Queen of Scots, a poet and essayist herself and one of the most read woman of her time, Olivia Louvel assembles a digital narrative through 17 compositions capturing different palettes, tones, playing with identity within the 'duality-duel' relationship of the two women, two queens and cousins, who were never to meet.  'Data Regina' is a body of work which gathers electronic songs 'The Antechamber’, along with a series of instrumentals, 'The Battles’, a sonic landscape inspired by the 16th century battles on the Anglo-Scottish border. 

As well as the publication of a CD, the interactive digital work www.dataregina.com provides a further platform to showcase the 3D animations produced by young animator Antoine Kendall as well as curated historical references. Composed and mixed by Louvel, the album also features Fiona Brice (Bella Union) on violin. 'Data Regina' was mastered by AGF (aka Antye Greie-Ripatti). This project has been brought to fruition with the financial support of the Arts Council, England (Grant for the Arts).

"A multimedia suite by composer Oliva Louvel digs deep into the psychic warfare between the 16th century British Queens. (…)Between the paintings adapted from fashion magazines that inspired 2011's Doll Divider and the reimagining of Louise Brooks's bobbed femme fatale for 2008's Lulu In Suspension, the iconography of femininity has been a rich source of material for the French born, Sussex based producer and visual artist to rip apart and papier mâché back into brooding electronic pop. (…) The refined melodies of Louvel's intimate vocals and Fiona Brice's lyrical violin stand in fragile opposition to a backdrop, based largely around processed tambour samples, of harsh percussive rolls and looming reverberations. It evokes not only the brutality of the battles that peppered the UK in the 16th century but the sense of surveillance and paranoia that both women must have experienced. "Abi Bliss/ The Wire (UK)


The Antechamber / The Battles



Data Regina (2017)