So on that day I went for some jogging to Parco Centocelle, an ex-airport located in not so central part of Rome, Italy. Precisely here – ×. Precisely at 13:41, while listening to a track named 'Mountainhead' by 65daysofstatic, I messaged my pal Tom saying I just got a idea...
A silly little idea to tour the world, meet up with people, visit places and make a film about that.
Short before I had a conversation with another friend – Marco, the brains behind 3industries. Thinking out loud I was trying to figure out with his help what I could become when I grow up. He made a point that DSDV·III·BASS I finished a year before turned out pretty good so why shouldn't I get back to that one in one way or another. Effectively, even though it wasn't anything of a big success or acclaim, that one indeed remains my most ambitious and most elaborate work up to date. The only problem was it's been already done and gone for me. I didn't want to repeat myself. I did believe I can go further though. So I picked the challenge that resulted in bad headache for days and eventual change of perspective that made the differece and opened up a new way.
The DSDV·III·BASS project was a badly documented one. I took a couple of in-progress shots but I was so terrified it could fail anytime that I payed little to none attention at all to that subtle aspect. The latter georgous photos of the finished bass by Kuba Styperek – shot the day after my saviour Rafał varnished it and only an hour before my flight to Edinburgh to get this bass to Simon – remain pretty much the only testimony. That thing was itching me ever since.
So I had a motive, a subject, will and interest in doing something but still needed some formula. A way to get it somewhat meaningful and exciting at the same time. What happened on the 14th of October was that I realized there is a certain way of synthesizing what I did – my background – with what I can do – my skills – and would want to do – my ambitions and interests. I understood I want to tell a story. The best story up my sleeve, a real one. Only that just by myself I was short on horse power...
My experience with film is limited to a handful of animations – precisely four – that I commited for different puproses, with my first one being a music video for a good friend of mine – Tonylight. I was released in May, 2015. Apparently that experiment led me to get acquianted with a certain Stefania Carbonara who a year later invited me to participate in her project – 'Agnese transitoria' – contributing this NSFW animation:
That little collaboration with signorina Carbonara was lots of fun. Even though we have never meet, the team experience was excellent, so I thought I could try inviting her to work with me on my project. I mailed her a rough concept for a road-film-something expecting that request will get turned down right away. How bizzare it didn't. Stefania Carbonara stepped on board as a director of photography on the trip to Edinburgh and I went woo-hoo!
I was 14 when I read 'Around the World in Eighty Days' and one of the things I remember best is that to pay the expenses of the journey it took half the money the guy had in his pocket. He bet with the other half.
The quid I'm betting with, pulling off this enterprise, is what I made working my ass off 24/7 during June, just two months ago. Lucky me got involved in a team project where we were asked to draw a whole lot of Sci-Fi illustrations – read more on that one and find full credits here. Surprisingly enough, it was the Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland that was curating this project. Note that the very Bass this whole thing is about resides in Edinburgh, Scotland. Don't you find it an intriguing coincidence? I do.
Sure my friend, money doesn't mean a thing but plane tickets and stuff cost. To pay that up I had to work hard but still those folks from RIAS were really cool and friendly with me. They deserve a mention because our interaction really made me belive that making things happen is possible.
Thanks to that affair in a course of a month arroused an opportunity, a risky one, but I couldn't miss it. So I entered the game and now I'm betting with all I have because I believe it is worth it.
Back in 2013, to my great dissapintment the best of this Bass – the process, the story behind, all adventures, people I met, places I visited, things I learned – passed unnoticed or neglected. When I first posted photos of the Bass online there was some positive feedback. I'm still grateful for that but the Bass was perceived as a product that it never was.
Since very begining I wanted at least to give a proper credit and kudos to those few people who were really generous for me and helped me out during my journey that was the building of the DSDV·III·BASS. All the people who fueled my motivation, shared their experience, or who helped me craft some parts. The Bass allowed me also to get to know and interact with other makers, people whose works I appreciate. People alike me involved in DIY of all sorts.
So now I would like to bring peoples' attention to what really matters in DIY projects like this one. To show why it it worth the hassle despite blood, sweat and tears spilled over.
The concept is that of revisiting certain places and meeting certain people with the purpose of connecting them altogether in a meaningful way where the excuse and the key is the bass. I want to gather them all in one place.
Before the end of 2014 I made my first awkward attempt to pay a visit of sorts to a musical instrument maker I greatly respect for his superb works, sharp mind and restless spirit. On the 6th of December I intruded Mauro Marchesini in his hometown Crevalcore to meet him in person at the very long last, say hello and thanks. If it hadn't been for that meeting, I could have already gave up on or forgot about my round-the-world-trip plans.
Mauro: Do you know how to climb a spiral staircase? Piotr: <feeling confused> Mauro: If not, now you can learn.
Once I had my smart litte plan sketched up and so I knew I would be to revisit Poznan, my hometown in Poland where the bass was build, where all of my "old masters" reside, I contacted Michał Pełczyński.
Michał is a fellow I know for a long time and all that time I remember him video making if not animating or DJ/VJing. Over the course of 2013 he produced this peculiar series of video shorts – a monthly recollection of memories.
Being able to recognise places, people, life events, even myself was an experience. Boy, that was intense! And it did start me ponder and evaluate my own possible interest in film making. We're talking about May '14.
Michał accepted the invitation to join the gang and he will be filming what is going to happen in Poland. Yesss!
Edinburgh plays a majot role in this story. That is where Simon Fokt, the man who plays the DSDV·III·BASS, is to be found. Me and Stefania Carbonara are going to meet up with him and thanks toa suggestion from Tonylight I contacted this place called The Forest Cafe. Cool folks over there liked the idea of doing something together so now I dare to say we have The Forest on our side!
If you wonder what kind of video to expect, I'd say we still need to figure it out exactly. But I agree with this fellow who said once that all truly great thoughts are conceived by walking. And there will be lots of walking ahead all of us. That leaves planty of space for thoughts.
One thing I can tell you for sure is that if you are curious about what DSDV from DSDV·III·BASS stands for, this very question will be adressed and answered. Stay tuned.
All of us involved in this project are quite diffused spatially across Europe. Simon and the Bass dwell in Edinburgh, Scotland. Stefania Carbonara is based in Genova, Italy. Michal Pelczynski in Poznan, Poland. Me, Piotr Sell, I'm currenlty living in Berlin, Germany.
Poznan, POLANDSeptember, 5 — 8
Milan, ITALYSeptember, 8 — 15
Edinburgh, UKSeptember, 15 — 17
Oxford, UKSeptember, 17 — 20
London, UKSeptember, 20 — 26
Rome, ITALYFrom September, 26 and on
F I N A L E
G R A N D E
How do you like this stuff? Is my writting any good? How about my jokes? Want to meet up on the road? Got some ideas to share? Want to suggest some nifty shooting location? Crituque? A better title?
All of the thoughts above came along last four weeks of intense email correspondence and messaging with dozens of people. Thanks folks, that made for a great excercise for my brain workout! The above content is subject to change/developement any time between now and the future.Possibly very soon.