Nisza Zine Issue 01 with the Paris based graphic designer Andres Komatsu. Check the interview below.
Where are you from?
Andres Komatsu: I’m from Chile (my family fled the Chilean dictatorship in the 80’s), from Japan (by one of my grandparents, that’s why i’m called Komatsu) and I'm also french 'cause I was born here and I don’t hear it often enough so I want to say that I love this country.
Where do you currently live?
AK: I live in Paris but I would love to move to Belgium. Love this country too.
How did you connect with Graphic Design and what inspired you to become a 3D artist?
AK: I’ve had an interest in graphic design since I was very young. 10 years maybe. From the VHS jackets of horror and sci-fi movies to the video game books that I had in my hands if memory serves me well, to the logos and mock-ups used on alternative music broadcasts that I spent late in the night on the cabled channels french and foreign (M6, Viva / Viva 2 , Mtv, Mtv 2 Uk...) that I liked to watch with my brother.
I don’t know how people perceive my pictures, artworks and posters but I take a lot of pleasure in developing this universe.
How would you describe your work in your own words?
AK: It’s a mix of sci-fi graphic design, 3D abstract forms, logos and pictures hightly inspired by old CGI, 3d elements of 90’s flyer party’s. That’s why maybe sometimes people don’t understand my artistic direction. My ultimate objective is not to create super-developed 3d images, on the contrary. I would like to return to the primitive state (at least my own conception, the one that comes from my childhood) of 3D. I have few affinity with these ultra-modern images that we see everywhere. But in some way I’m not very progressive.
What is your usual work process like? What inspires your art?
AK: I hang out a lot on Tumblr and you already know I‘m obssesed by old cgi (80’s sometimes / 90’s and beginning of 2000’ particulary), I play Playstation 1 and watch Dreamcast video games (just watch 'cause unfortunately it’s too expensive for me), artistic direction of publicity of this games, digging a lot on internet and browse through lost websites. I love Y2k aesthetic institute, watching Mtv Chill Out Zone, Warp animation compilation.
It becomes a real source of inspiration and obviously I regularly dive back into what is at the origin of my fascination for these beautiful images (in any case my own definition of what a beautiful image is) including the references I mentioned above. For as long as I can remember, The Designers Republic has always been stuck in my mind. I managed to develop artistically but they remain one of my best references. I would go so far as to say that I will not exist without them.
I spend my days on discogs, listening to underground industrial metal bands. It inspires me to listen to them while working. It makes me feel like an old-school hacker at the beginning of cyberpunk culture.
How did the internet influence your development?
AK: The Internet clearly allows me to go back to all those references. Without this tool, I would have to buy them on Ebay or Leboncoin to dive into it completely and have them at my fingertips, which economically would not make me very happy.
It also allows me to discover the work of other artists, a real source of inspiration and motivation. And I must say that thanks to the internet I have less complex to show my work. There is not the problem (typically French) of having to leave a great art school to be considered an artist. On the internet, everyone has his place.
Tell me about your local scene, who you collaborate with and what are the biggest issues you deal with?
AK: I have trouble with the notion of local scene but I will try to respond to this question. I work with friends or sometimes out of passion or affinity (sometimes this is not even what one might call a collaboration but rather a request, I need them more than them from me), but that’s it. To name a few, I am thinking of french (but living in berlin) artist Alpha Rats. We have made few works together. She made an amazing Zine called Spektrum Crush. My dear Simon Villaret from Selam X, my lovely friend Cherry B Diamond, Agata Kay as an actress ('cause I make videos too), people of my place Carbone 17 and my lovely Olga Pham.
Do you have any passions besides graphic design?
AK: I’m passionate about music. Especially dark disco, slow techno and what I love to called «chug music». It’s a kind of neo newt beat. I produce, play regularly, manage a label. I am deeply connected to this scene.
Also, I love the cinema. I have made my first short film on which I am currently working a lot. It will be finished before the end of summer and I am always very happy to announce it. It’s my little baby.
AK: Thank’s for having me. It’s always very pleasant to know that this work interests other people than ourselves.