Julian Klincewicz talks VHS, Skating, and Gosha

After being noticed by designer Gosha Rubchinskiy and putting together an exclusive film that takes you behind the scenes of the AW15 collection, we decided to look into Julian Klincewicz’s rad VHS and layered film clips that immediately caught our attention.
How did you initially get in to making films?
I think it started with my first cell phone actually, it would only shoot 15 seconds at a time, and the quality was soo soo terrible, worse than vhs, and i just thought it was fun to make little videos using those clips, trying to make something interesting out of them.
After that my aunt was cleaning out my grandmas attic, and found a vhs camera that she sent to me. So when i got it, i figured i should do something with it so it wouldn’t just sit… I started just filming everything that happened, and then sort of just taught myself to use video editing software. Once i realized it was something i was really interested in, i forced myself to buy a Vimeo plus account haha. I figured if i spent the money on it, it would force me to make lots of videos… It was more a symbol to remind myself to be productive than anything else…
What was it like working with Gosha Rubchinskiy? Did you guys collaborate to come up with an idea?
It was incredible. I felt so excited and… Honored isn’t quite the right word, but i felt really lucky that we got to work together. When i turned 19, i made a list of things i want to accomplish before i turn 20… There’s a bunch of stuff on there that might seem kind of far fetched or out of reach, but working with Gosha was one of them, and it seems like a few more of them might be coming true in the next couple of months… He’s definitely one of the most inspiring people i’ve ever gotten to work with- he really knows what he’s doing, and what he likes, what he’s interested in, what’s inspiring to him. The conceptual work he puts into his projects is very inspiring to me.
So the theme for his A/W15 collection is SPORT. He’s looking at “sport” in terms of the Russia/China relationship, economic sport, and 90’s Ukrainian club culture among other influences. So i just had all of those in mind when i started editing the video. The thing about working with really talented people is it makes you work twice as hard to try to be able to meet them where they are, work at the same level in your own way. With the video i really tried to just capture his themes, his concepts for the collection, in a way that would stand out as my work, but fit with in his world naturally.
VHS is making a comeback, but you’ve been using it since your first video posted… what inspired you to use VHS and what do you like about it so much?
Really it’s out of necessity… I got a vhs camera for free so i figured I’d start making videos. I’d love to shoot videos and short films with super 8, 16mm, 4k cameras etc. but I just don’t have them, I don’t have the budget to work with them right now, so i’m really trying to just use vhs in my own way, do something interesting (at least to me) with it, so that when I do get access to other types of cameras, I’ll be able to look at them in my own way.
I do like using vhs because it’s not too serious, right now i’m trying to figure out how to use it in a new way with different methods of transferring it so that it becomes something other than just “vhs footage” I don’t want to get stuck as “vhs guy” forever, but since it’s what I have to work with, I want to be able to work with it fluidly for what it is- an interesting and very strong aesthetic.
Many of your videos layer different clips, where did you get that concept from?
It comes from a few different places, I think i was originally interested in multi screens because of Ray an Charles Eames’ Russia/Usa installation. Bill Strobeck’s videos have turned me on to the idea of layers as well. I’m really interested in Rudolf Steiner’s idea of repetition as a means to clear communication, and how I can modify that so it becomes something of my own… I think that’s the biggest reason i like multiple screens at a time… There’s also just more rome to explore if you have two or three layers, or four screens at a time.
What messages are you trying to share with the world?
Oh boy… I don’t know yet… Right now i just want to do my work, and do it well… I feel really crazy when i’m not making things, so I just like to work on things…
One thing is though, I think a lot of people who want to “make it” as artists or creatives or whatever, are too scared to try’n reach out to the people they look up to, to magazines, to authors, photographers, film makers, designers, publishing presses, whatever it is… That’s such a huge tool. Generally i think if people like your work they’ll want to help you, they’ll want to work with you, but especially when you’re beginning, if you don’t take those steps, you’re shooting yourself in the foot.
How has skate culture played a role in your style and what you choose as your film subjects?
It’s hard to say exactly, but it’s definitely played a huge role. Especially right now, maybe more so than ever. Like half of the video’s i’m thinking about making, planning to make, or am currently working on, involve skateboarding in one form or another. I’m hoping to do something a little new with it.
Are you looking forward to working with anyone in particular in the future/anything we can look forward to?
Mmmmm in terms of collaborations I’m not totally sure if i can say anything yet, but there’s a few cool projects on the horizon. I’ll be having another show or two in tokyo later this year, I’m trying to put out a couple of zines, hopefully my first book of photos/video stills, a bunch of videos. If I can get a grant or something I’ve been working on the script for my first short film, so it’d be great to try’n film that later this year or next year. I got a bunch of ambitions too that might come true soon, i don’t wanna jinx em yet though. I’ll let ya know if they end up working out!
*header image by Kenneth J. Mitchell
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