Crt, VHS, encoders, converters, do you remember all of these, right?
It was back 20/30 years ago and still they are having a huge impact in today’s art, because of their colours, effects, vibes and so on. But let’s think about a disruption in this media, something that creates a distortion or an “error” in these devices’ normal functioning.
We’re talking about glitches, and more specifically we are talking about Glass Void.
Video creator based in Germany, in the beautiful city of Munich, Tom (the artist’s real name) creates dreamscapes, gaps in black spaces filled with dots, lines, pixels, frequencies and acid colors. The combination of distortion and background music of SFX generates mind-twisting visuals.
Glass Void takes graphic and video design on a new level, bringing to us a process that will make us feel almost mentally connected to the stunning images he makes. Thanks to his deep yet very immediate narrative he manages to represent the human nature through an electronic device, mixing the creator with his creation.
Get in touch with his mindset and his relationship with the technology he uses on a daily basis. Explore his work, and let yourself be charmed by the shapes, movements and harmonies of his artwork.
Hello Tom, thank you for accepting this interview, it’s a pleasure having you on JugaadMag. I would like to start by asking you something about you and your background. Feel free to introduce yourself in your own way.
Hey Guys, thanks for having me, I’m super stoked to answer your questions about my art! I’m a Glitch Video Creator from Munich/Germany and at the moment work with a lot of different Artists and Musicians to support or complement their art with my Visuals. I come from a design background, been into graphic design & visual arts for a long time – in the fall of 2021, (i had just quit my design day job of 10 years and wanted to become a freelance graphic designer) i discovered CRT glitch art and kind of took a deep dive: hours upon hours on reddit, instagram & forums taught me the basics of this art.
You work with video art, especially with the glitch effect and VHS style. How did you approach video art, and why did you choose to focus on this style? Was it part of a predefined path or an outcome of past experimentation?
I guess I was always attracted to using things in a way they might not have been intended for or using them in an overdriven or slightly wrong way. I have a memory of me as a 5 year old using my parent’s old video camera from the early 80s. you could connect it to the tv and see the live image. Pointing it at the tv produced a video feedback and i still remember how intriguing it felt to interact with the copy of a copy of a copy of the reality i was in. Our tv set multiplied into infinity and each shake of the camera would change the image a bit. This is the same way you create video artefacts and images that can not be achieved any other way. and i think this may be stuck with me over the years. Finding back to this art form as an adult and rediscovering everything really feels full circle to me.
I stumbled into video art in 2021 because I saw the cover artwork of an album with some distinct crt-tv-like design features. researched how this was done and found out about analog glitch gear and this kind of very underground art form. It has its small place in mainstream media and surely follows trends but there’s so many ways to do glitch art with any medium – it will organically evolve. I focused on analog CRT glitch art, bought my first glitch gear, a cheap small tv and started my Instagram account shortly after to have some sort of output.
Some of your artworks remind me of Toshio Matsumoto’s, did you receive any influence from the pioneers of video art in your opinion?
No, I haven’t had the chance to check out some of his work. I might in the future but I usually get my inspiration from other media, other contemporary glitch artists or by thinking about the topic for hours and coming up with ways to improve my own style and look. I have a very technical approach and really don’t consider myself a full blown artist. I use technology to create aesthetic media, I am also a graphic designer & musician but ultimately I’m visualizing moods and feelings. Do artists do the same? yes. still don’t feel like one.
If you have to define or give a name to your style, which name would you pick? And why?
I’d say I create analog glitch dreamscapes. I want to create stuff that looks otherworldly but still has a connection to the place we all live in.
What are your opinions about the contemporary video art situation?
There are a lot of talented artists and a lot of them have their own style. I don’t connect with too many other people, there’s some I am friends with but I’ve never talked with any of these artists in real life or at conventions. I love to consume their content and bouncing ideas back and forth though!
Video editing is a very complex process that involves many different steps. When it comes to creating something from scratch do you plan it or do you simply unleash your mind?
I usually roughly know how something should look beforehand and I know the tools I’ll need to use. The real outcome often exceeds my imagination because I’m learning something new in the process almost every time. I need to really stand behind the stuff I release and want to connect with it on a higher level. It helps me a lot to know about stuff and having a rough vision.
And if you’re working on some visuals for concerts? Do you analyse the music track or do you follow your own narrative?
You usually get a few notes on what to incorporate and how to make it look. I listen to the music nonstop while creating footage to really get in the mood and connect with the feel of the song. I have a feeling, this pushes the visuals a bit more in the right direction, at least from my point of view.
“The more you grow the more your work evolves” – do you think that this statement is representing you in a way?
For sure, this is 100% true. i wish to evolve in a more sophisticated direction and not falling for too experimental stuff that only speaks to the hardcore glitch fans. As I’ve decided to make this a full time job some months ago I need to find the right balance between underground art and easy approachability.
Are you working on any big project at the moment? What are your plans for the future, can we get a sneak peek of them or its top secret material?
Yes I do, but I can’t speak about the projects as of now 🙂 check my IG for any updates!
Our signature question. What tips would you like to share with young artists that are walking their first steps into the video art world?
This may be more of an abstract tip, but: try to create something pretty, something you really like. then build on it. don’t release it yet, ask yourself “how can i take this to the next level without overdoing it?” do this 3 times in a row without losing the initial feel you were trying to go for. you’ll be amazed what you can do if you don’t follow your first impulse on finishing your work and putting it out there.