Cherry Wine

Made by Chelsea Chen

A physical translation of the song Cherry Wine by Hozier

Created: October 17th, 2016



The song Cherry Wine is not necessarily my favorite song ever, but it definitely created a strong impact on me, especially after watching its music video. Initially, this was just a song that sounded nice, but I didn't really understand the lyrics. After some research, I discovered that it's about domestic abuse and that came as a shocking knowledge, because the entire song sounds tranquil and even has a little romantic feeling to it at first. Also, the way Hozier draws connection between violence and cherry wine appeals to me as extremely interesting and clever. The song focuses "not on the violence itself but the world of the victim before and after, as well as how difficult it can be for the victim to see themselves as a victim, particularly when they're in love with their abuser." (quote from ) On many levels, Cherry Wine is quite impactful, and I seek to translate it by focusing on the emotions of the victim as well. 

In the music video, the victim covers her bruises with makeup and is blinded by the beautiful moments in her relationship, overlooking the abuses. I was inspired by the scene in which the victim slowly wipes off her makeup and reveals her bruises to the audience, and therefore I chose tissue as my primary material for this project.



My final product is a piece of tissue with cherry juice dripped onto it, which takes up most of the space. Surrounding the cherry juice is some red lipstick and some pink rouge. There's also a few strips of copper wires intertwined with the tissue. 

I made the overall color tone of this project pink, to emphasize the sweetness of cherry wine. 



Like I mentioned in the Intention section, I knew I wanted to use tissue or materials alike to create this project because of the powerful scene in the music video. However, I tentatively considered using fabric as well, and embroidering it with patterns. I wasn't sure what kind of patterns to embroider or if I'm skillful enough to complete the embroidering under 2 hours. Thus I abandoned that idea. 

Because the title of the song is Cherry Wine, and there's a line in the lyrics that goes "the blood is rare and sweet as cherry wine", which is portraying the victim's reluctance to admit that they're in an abusive relationship, I thought it's important to incorporate cherry wine, or its variant, cherry juice, into this project, as it symbolizes this song. Then, as I was inspired by the imagery of the victim covering up her bruises with heavy makeup in the music video to show her turning a blind eye to the situation she's in, I smeared makeup onto the tissue, and intentionally made the makeup and cherry juice blend together. 

I added the copper wire in my project at the end, because I wanted something to represent the twisting nature and grotesqueness of domestic abuse, for love and violence are often the opposite of each other but interwoven in this case. Also, I intended the way the wires twist the soft tissue to symbolize how violence has destroyed the soft and sweet love.



I think for people who are familiar with the song Cherry Wine, and its music video, this physical recreation of it is probably recognizable, because I tried to relate the audio and the physical representation literally. However, for people who are not familiar with this song, I do realize that this project would probably appear as very weird and nonsensical.

Had I had more time, I'd probably try to realize my idea of making a feminine garment (as majority of the victims of domestic abuse are female), print some domestic abuse artworks onto it, and make the design such that there are twisted details. 

I learned that trying to represent audio in 3D physical form is very challenging, as I naturally started out basing my project on 2D graphics and my project still turned out to be somewhat 2D, despite my intention to make it 3D. It really requires innovative thinking and probably experience of interpreting something abstract like a piece of audio into a solid object, and I think this exercise would definitely serve me well in the future. 

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62-150 Intro to Media Synthesis and Analysis

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New creative industries are empowering new modes of collaborative consumption, creation and reuse of media. This often relies on successful collaborations between cross-trained artists, designers a...more


A physical translation of the song Cherry Wine by Hozier