Find out which book changed this Swedish director’s life, her favourite tropical island and what goes into her unconventional breakfast
Åsa Riton’s films, whether commercials, music videos or documentaries, are something a little different. She has a great passion for art and likes to push boundaries with her visual language - a tendency that draws on her degrees from both Central St Martins in London and The Danish Film School.
Represented in her native Sweden by Camp David and RSA Films elsewhere, she’s directed films for brands such as Nike, Philips and Mercedes Benz and heaps of cool music and art projects like her uniquely awkward film for The Knife, in which the masked band members interviewed their fans. In 2016, Åsa collaborated with Swedish artist Andreas Emenius on a cross-disciplinary art project to make three music videos, tour videos, and art installations for Danish electronic music artist Trentemøller. She’s even worked with filmmaking visionary David Lynch and Danish fashion icon Henrik Vibskov. Basically, she’s done a lot of cool stuff.
Check out her Essential List and get to know Åsa a bit more.
o Place of birth: Sweden
o Hometown: Stockholm
o Staycation: Rival Hotel
o Vacation: Kauai
o Pet: Cat. Or a small dog that looks like a cat.
o Place of work: Home studio
o Place of workout: Anywhere with instructors who tells me secrets
o Side project: Worship
o Mode of transport: Soon to have an electrical bike
o Bonus Travel Essential: Pillow
o Artist: Andreas Emenius
o Musician: The Blaze
o Commercials / music video director: Emma Westenberg, Kim Gehrig, Aoife McArdle, Emily Kai Bock, Martin De Thurah
o Film director: Miranda July, Kathryn Bigelow, Jonathan Glazer, Lorna Tucker, SteveMcQueen, Spike Jonze…
o Photographer: Corinne Day, Leonn Ward, Sally Mann, Elaine Constantine, Ellen von Unwerth
o Film: ‘Birth’ by Jonathan Glazer, ‘12 Years a Slave’ by Steve McQueen
o Series: Handmaids Tale, Girls
o Commercial: ‘This Girl Can’ directed by Kim Gehrig and Guinness Beer by Jonathan Glazer
o Music Video: Janelle Monáe ‘Pynk’ directed by Emma Westenberg
o Video Game: No clue, but I like this one
o Board Game: Kalaha
o Book: The Artist Way by Julia Cameron. It changed my life by making me realise that I could do directing for a living. Also want to recommend ‘Not Buying It: A Guide to a New Era of Advertising’ by Christina Knight. A handbook for anyone who’s interested in how we could change the industry from within in the post metoo and timesup era - to create real gender equality and diversity hands on.
o Podcast: The Guilty Feminist
o Newspaper (off or online): Dagens Nyheter & The Guardian
o Magazine: The Paris Review
o Bonus Culture Essential: Sam Roddick and Susie Babchick (my guiding stars)
Food and Drink
o Breakfast: Kale salad with avocado and halloumi
o Cheap bite: Oysters
o Working lunch: Always
o Favourite Dish: Palak Paneer
o Signature Dish: Fish tacos
o Snack: Semla
o Guilty Pleasure: My boyfriend
o Bar: Anything above 20th floor
o Booze: Anything with bubbles
o Not Booze: Hot water and Thumbs Up
o Bonus Food: Scones in morning
o Bonus Beverage: Recently started sipping on coffee again
o Phone: i i i
o Computer: Mac!
o TV: ?
o Headphones: Whatever comes with the phone
o Camera: 35mm
o Soundsystem: Stuff without cables
o Pen / pencil: Black pen
o Where you document an idea: Screenshots everywhere
o Casual Clothing: Yoga outfit
o Smart Clothing: Henrik Vibskov tights
o Footwear: Rodebjer or flip-flops
o Watch: What?
o Collection: Recycling, not collecting
o App: Headspace – brilliant meditation app that actually works! My parents are meditation teachers and I learned TM (transcendental) when I was a kid, but I still find it hard to have a routine and this app really helps.
o Website: Heroes by Heroes - Our new production company and digital platform representing female directors and storytellers being launched in 2019: www.heroesbyheroes.com
o Digital work tool: iPhone
o Digital work tool: GO-Pro
o Analogue work tool: Flip-flops and one of my favourite DOP’s Sophie Winqvist
o Morning grooming / makeup essential: Wash my face
o Bonus Kit Essential: Be kind <3
Check out some behind the scenes shots from Asa's films below.
Behind the scenes Henrik Vibskov and Andreas Emenius