More News From Nowhere: A Conversation with Julian Klincewicz on His Capsule Collection with Stance
Julian Klincewicz is an ecletic artist, one that, at such a young age, has been able to create universes around this music, photography, design and collaborative works. Take his new capsule collection with Stance: its not just a collaboration on socks, but a universe "box set" of a zine, tee, music that revolve around finding beauty and inspiration in the mundane. That idea, "Nowhere," is not a negative, but a positive search for creativity in unlikely places. On Thursday, February 27th, Julian will expand the universe of the collaboration with an installation and show for the release of the Stance capsule at Swish Projects in San Diego from 7—10pm. We sat down with Julian to talk about the collab, but the moments in between projects where inspiration takes hold and how to fight through creative blocks.
Evan Pricco: Looking at your career, you are really a jack of all trades. A creative Swiss Army Knife. Who were some of your creative heroes growing up that sort of made you think you could do it all?
Julian Klincewicz: Thanks so much! Hmm, I think a lot of it has to do with just growing up around creative friends, being supported by my mom, and being encouraged to be creative - in school & in life. I was in a circus when I was little, then I started skating, then my friends and I started bands. We were always just exploring—we’d build stuff, go on long walks, ride bikes. A lot of my hero’s were pro skaters who also did art, like Mark Gonzales, Zarosh Eggleston. I grew up going to this DIY skatepark in San Diego, and there were always mosaics and murals and weldings. I just saw a lot of creativity around me and wanted to explore it all. I also always had mentors. My friend Wes Bruce was a huge influence—he would creative these amazing forts, create these entire worlds you could get lost in. That idea has always stuck with me throughout pretty much all of my work.
You aren't a stranger to collaborations. When Stance comes to you wanting to do collaboration, what is the first thing your mind goes to?
I had this vision for making a giant sock. We didn’t do it for this project, but I still want to do it, so hopefully in the future. But I guess after running through a handful of ideas, what I landed on was this balance between the sun, the moon, and the earth. It’s a theme I return to a lot, this kind of romantic notion of the moon, and the sun, and the earth caught in between. I loved the idea of the globe as a symbol of Sadness and beauty, of Age and Youth. Of feeling blue, but being green. I think in a lot of ways thats what beauty is about - the line between beauty and sadness is so close together and usually the best things somehow contain both. I think that’s ultimately what it’s all about…
I read in a previous interview at the end of 2019 that you felt a bit burnt out creatively and that fueled your last show at Swish, Boys Grown Tall. I think many artists now, especially because being an artist and creative is so widespread and wild wild west at the moment, feel stretched thin and exhausted. What do you do when you feel overwhelmed? What are your go-to inspirations?
I think sometimes it can just be really difficult to slow down. I’ve found that to be one of my biggest insights this past year. One of the metaphors or parallels I was drawing with Boys Grown Tall was the idea of a run away truck, of moment that takes on a life of its own. What do you do once you’ve lost sight of why you’re doing what you’re doing, but you can’t stop going? The pace of life is so fast right now, its easy to get swept up in it without realizing it… and next thing you know, you’re not really taking the time to be present, or to savor each moment. At the same time though, the truck is kind of this playful symbol of hope, of childhood imagination. It’s the thing that helped me realize I wasn’t savoring the moment, finding joy and fun in everyday life as much as I should. It was the reminder I needed in 2019. Some of the best advice I’ve ever gotten is, “It’s not what you do—it’s what you do with what you do.”
The best thing I do to prevent/treat feeling overwhelmed is mediation— I’ve been doing Transcendental Meditation since I was 13 years old—and when I’m on a regular meditation schedule, I find it incredibly easy to not get stressed, and make better & clearer creative & life decisions. It can be really hard to maintain a regular meditation schedule all the time though, especially traveling a lot.
What have you created for Stance? And what is the exhibition going to feature?
I like to think of it as a little world. It’s a multi-media collection: an album, a zine, a t-shirt, boxers, and 3 pairs of socks. They all work together as pieces of this world, "Nowhere." I was thinking a lot about finding beauty and joy in the mundane or the boring, sort of how inspiring the unremarkable can be if you’re looking for it, so I designed around that. One thing I return to a lot is the idea that “the true value of art is everything you go through while making it.” I don’t think my original idea for the collection was this exploration of beauty in the mundane, but that’s a lot of what my personal emotional process has been this past year, and it created a really perfect world for this collection.
I had this idea that the t-shirt could sort of be a living art piece. It’s giving context to real life, in real time. The campaign sort of reflects that. I photographed the shirt around the world, all these different places that could be anywhere or nowhere, some are around the corner from my house, or in a hotel, some are in Iceland or China. I like the idea that the shirt is the costume for the scene, and the scene is anywhere that we find inspiration, from the grand to the boring. It’s looking out at the Grand Canyon, or looking at the dentist. Every moment has something to offer if you have the energy to look for it. That search is sort of at the heart of the world. The search for beauty and energy and inspiration.
The music is sort of a score to this world. The zine is a collection of photographs, video stills, and writings from the past 5 years, all from different trips and travels. They’re almost like stolen scenes from this world. The socks tie back to the sun, moon and globe themes, this kind of dance we do, floating in space, a simultaneous listlessness and tumult.
For more information about the collaboration and show tonight, visit @stancesocks and @swishprojects