Björk has now not only returned to the screen, but also to the red carpet. The Icelandic enigma famously retired from acting after picking up the Best Actress award at Cannes for Lars Von Trier’s Dancer in the Dark 2000. The was until the director Robert Eggers came along and convinced her to take a role in The Northman, a Viking revenge saga costarring Anya Taylor-Joy, Alexander Skarsgård, and Nicole Kidman. (Björk plays a creepy sorceress whose dialogue was cowritten by her longtime collaborator Sjón, who also played a role in getting her and her daughter Ísadóra Bjarkardóttir Barney to do the film.) And while she’s served up plenty of looks on the stage over the past decade, Björk hadn’t stepped foot on a major red carpet for 10 years until this Thursday, when she attended the film’s premiere in Iceland’s capital, Reykjavík.
As made abundantly clear when she attended the 2001 Oscars in an iconic dress shaped like a swan, Björk isn’t the type to play it safe with her step-and-repeat ensembles. A look from Loewe’s surreal spring 2022 collection, then, was a natural choice. (The Jonathan Anderson designs have only resurfaced on a select few, Zendaya and Tessa Thompson among them, since the house showed at Paris Fashion Week last October.) Björk went with a cherry-red gown with bat-wing sleeves that was long enough to offer only a glimpse of her platforms. Fittingly for the premiere of a viking film, it notably featured a shiny sculpted breastplate. Like the runway model, Björk further made a statement with her hair, which was striped with red and green.
Björk’s experience with The Northman appears to have been the complete opposite of the nightmare that was filming Dancer in the Dark with von Trier. (It was harrowing enough that Björk reportedly vowed never to act again; she later accused a Danish director who is widely believed to be von Trier of sexual harassment.) “It feels good to finally see one’s roots treated with imagination, intelligence and quality,” Björk said of The Northman on Instagram. “Modern archaeology reveals more and more that this period was full of culture, textiles, poetry, music, fertility and humour, it wasn't all just war... i hope this is an encouragement for female directors to take on this period.” In typical Björk fashion, she concluded with what resembled a poem:
here is a humble hope that my partake in this planted a seed that may grow in that direction .
!! i summon that tree !!