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Portfolio Preview #13 / Julien Antonescu


Who are you and what do you do?
I am Julien, a print oriented graphic designer
with a background in web design.

Why do you do what you do?
Before feeling the need to design anything I always felt the need to understand
images and to be able to identify why one visual works while another one doesn't.
As a teenager, I was a fan of many rock bands and I couldn't really dissociate
my experience of their music from the album artworks and logos. It was fascinating.

How do you work?
I usually freelance for different kinds of studios, from exhibition
design to identity and branding places.

What’s your background?
After having failed art school right after college I took a few courses in desktop
publishing. I knew there was something wrong as I wasn't being given any
theoretical teaching or artistic awareness. But eventually I managed to get a job as
a web designer in a small company in a town near mine. Except I didn't really like
the company's projects and felt like I was paying the price for my failure in studies.
I went back to school at 25 and started all over again.

What’s integral to the work of an artist?
A form of detachment I'd say. A regular back and forth between visual stimulation
and appeal for nothingness. It's really hard to do nowadays. For example, imagine
a writer who would be tweeting three times a day?... Would that help his creativity?
I strongly doubt it. He'll end up talking about really random things, like some do already..
Wit and spirituality comes from detachment, you have to stand back.


What role does the artist have in society?
Making you feel better about belonging to the human race, not necessarily by
making you happy but by sharing a vision of our own flaws and limits.
Designers on the other hand question the world through the way we interact
with it, which embraces a lot more constraints and parameters but is fundamental too.

How has your practice change over time
I gained self-confidence, I've stopped over-thinking everything I do. I was obsessed with the idea
of creating something new, exploring new territories. But listen to the prog rock of the late seventies.
These bands all sounded the same and people loved it. At some point you just have to go with the flow.

What art do you most identify with?
I used to love abstract painting because of its inherent melancholy and violence, I still do.
It's especially true of Willem de Kooning but names like Ben Nicholson and Sean Scully,
they were heroes to me. Now it's different. I don't really mind if I can spot a little chap
cycling in the background.


What’s your strongest memory of your childhood?
Boredom. Sitting at a table at my granny's and drawing comic strips. Some neighbours coming
over for coffee. We'd eat sweet buns. And I can still hear some of their conversations.

What themes do you pursue?
That's interesting but it would be hard to define. As a designer it would have to be connected
with general culture, architecture or even urban planning. When I was painting it was all about geometry
and surfaces. In my drawings it was totally organic, an apology of randomness. Go figure.


What’s your scariest experience?
A few years ago when I was driving, my car slipped on a damp road. The car crossed
the line and went to stop quietly on the other side. I had clearly lost control.
I don't really fancy driving anymore.

What’s your favourite art work?
I think of a cover art for Power Windows by Rush.
It's really hard to chose one though.

What jobs have you done other than being an artist?
I have been a warehouse man, worked in cold rooms for a while, cleaned tubes in the steel
industry, delivered rental cars, and have even driven a guy who was checking 3G antennas.

Is the artistic life lonely? What do you do to counteract it?
Again, as much as the studio life can be exciting I'm convinced that you have to withdraw at some point if you want to make something new. Then of course it's about getting the balance right.

What do you dislike about the art world?
I don't like when it's about images, but emotions instead. It makes me sad.


What research to you do?
I used to watch loads of American and west European films for my final project at school. I felt
like I had to see them all. That was freaky. I can hardly stay two hours in front of a movie now.

What is your dream project?
Something that would save the world from global waste and fight
the dissolution of ideas and thinking in mass media.

Favourite or most inspirational place?
I like to think I haven't been there yet.

Professionally, what’s your goal?
Being fulfilled by working with different people and still find the time
to develop things for myself, and not necessarily design related.




If you would like to see your work here; then do add it to this Flickr group; or upload it to that facebook page or do just pop something in the post.



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