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Grimes Introduces The World To Her Digital Alter-Ego WarNymph

Gettyimages | JC Olivera
By Michael Coe

Alternative pop-star Grimes, known for her distinctive genre-bending production, futuristic philosophies, and high-profile relationship with Elon Musk, recently debuted a digital avatar named WarNymph in anticipation of her new album Miss Anthropocene. WarNymph, a hairless, pointy-eared digital creature depicted wearing a pink space-suit, is set to serve as a stand-in, mascot, and all-around alter-ego for the musician as she moves forward in her career. As Grimes explained in a recent interview, "WarNymph is my digital avatar, aka my digital self."

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Gettyimages | Vivien Killilea

WarNymph has been a long time in the making, with Grimes hinting at its arrival for the past few months. Grimes explained that part of her interest in having a digital avatar came from a desire to avoid absorbing internet scrutiny on too personal of a level, saying, "it’s hard on the psyche to have so much negativity thrown your way on a daily basis via social media...everyone is living two lives: their digital life and their offline life. I want to untether my two lives from each other for mental-health purposes."

Gettyimages | Frazer Harrison

Grimes has also been keen to start using WarNymph as a stand-in due to her pregnancy. She elected to use a Balenciaga-sporting WarNymph as a model for her in a new edition of The Face magazine and explained, "I’m...pregnant. Having a digital body allows me to keep working throughout the later stages of my pregnancy, and after I have my baby, so I can spend more time with them. It’s hard for me to do photoshoots and fit into clothes at the moment, but WarNymph is here in your magazine promoting my album."

Gettyimages | JC Olivera

WarNymph fits in quite well with Grimes' futuristic, post-human image. Over the past few months, the musician has become well-known for sharing occasionally controversial opinions about the future of art and the role of technology in modern life. In November of last year, Grimes suggested that “we're in the end of art, human art...once there's actually AGI (Artificial General Intelligence), they're gonna be so much better at making art than us." The statement caused extensive discourse amongst the musical community, with some supporting Grimes' radical vision and others harshly condemning it.

Gettyimages | Neilson Barnard

This week will see the release of Grimes' new album Miss Anthropocene, her first full-length album release since 2015. Miss Anthropocene is intended to be a concept album about the "goddess of climate change". Grimes explained that the album's eponymous character provided her with the opportunity to "pursue villainy artistically". Thus far, reviews for the new record have been positive, with The Guardian stating, "the emotions at its center feel prosaic, realistic and affecting" and Rolling Stone declaring it "a work of ambition."

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