windshield baby gameboy movie | 2009 | Gameboy Camera->DV | 1:48
A car crash digitally interpreted using a Nintendo Gameboy camera reducing the accident to pixels and blips.
“Equally spooky but at very different pitch is Windshield Bab Gameboy Movie. Clint Enns takes footage of a car crash, loops it and processes it through a Game Boy camera — pushing the image to the limits of digital abstraction, and flattening the horror of a baby’s violent death into a cloudy spray of pixels.” – Karina Longworth, “Girlish but Guttural: the Games People Play With,” L.A. Weekly (April 15, 2010).
“windshield baby gameboy movie takes video of a car crash and processes it through a Nintendo Gameboy camera, a device I’m not familiar with. It’s a highly pixelated film and much more abstract than the death of natural language. There’s no music on the soundtrack, just short random bursts of classic video game blips so that the horrific sound of screaming metal and glass shattering is reduced to that Atari Pac-Man sound you still hear today whenever somebody’s playing a video game in a movie.” – Mike Everleth, “The Art of Disaster,” Underground Film Journal (March 9, 2009)
Interview with Streaming Festival
“Interview with Clint Enns,” Streaming Festival (2009).
Streaming Festival: Who is Clint Enns?
Clint Enns: I am a video artist/filmmaker from Winnipeg, Manitoba.
SF: Your film is about?
CE: Found footage of a car crash is digitally interpreted using a Nintendo Gameboy Camera. An attempt to demonstrate the inherently dehumanized nature of digital images.
SF: How did you start with film? And do you have an educational background in art or film?
CE: I have no formal education in art nor film; however, I have been an avid cinephile for many years and enjoy reading about experimental film & video. Currently, I am an instructor for a course on mathematics in art at the University of Manitoba and my formal education is in mathematics.
SF: Could you explain how you work? What themes or concepts are important to you?
CE: Experimenting with outdated technologies provide us with new images and processes. When devices like the Nintendo Gameboy Camera, Atari game console and VHS machine first came out, they were too expensive to experiment with. These devices often break through heavy experimentation. Now, these devices are available for cheap to anyone with interest, enthusiasm and the urge to experiment.
I am also interested in abstracting images. I feel that through decoding abstract images, the viewer is filling in information using their own personal memories/experiences. This allows the spectator to become personally engaged with the work.
SF: Where do you get your ideas or influences from?
CE: Often my ideas come from dialogues with other artists, either verbally or non-verbally. For instance, I am often inspired by watching films and reading about process. Furthermore, artist run culture and community plays a vital role in my life. Without independent arts organizations like Video Pool Media Arts Centre I would probably not be making work at all.
SF: How does the title relate to the work, and how do you find a fitting title?
First, the title is intended to capture the process by which it was made. Next, it is intended to be a play on the title Window Water Baby Moving (1959) by Stan Brakhage. Brakhage’s film contains images of a babies’ birth whereas my video contains images of a babies’ death. I was originally going to title the piece “windshield to the womb” since the images from the Gameboy Camera look like ultrasound footage and there is a Christian pro-life video titled Window to the Womb; however, I thought that this title would be too harsh.
SF: How does content relate to the form of your work?
CE: The content is directly related to the form. First, the Nintendo Gameboy Camera allowed me to abstract the images. Second, the Nintendo Gameboy Camera made the images look as though they were from a video game.
SF: How important is sound in film, and if you use sounds, do you create your own or use existing?
CE: In this work, the sounds came directly from the Nintendo Gameboy Camera. The playful 8-bit sound is intended to create a juxtaposition with the harsh images of the car crash. When I first showed the footage, someone laughed because of the sounds.
SF: How do you finance your projects (by yourself, sponsors or subsidy)?
CE: To date, my videos are self financed. This is another reason why I use outdated technologies, that is, they are often free or at the very least they are relatively cheap to purchase second hand. Also, this is another reason why artist run centres/culture has been vitally important in helping me to create work.
SF: Nowadays everyone with the right equipment can create videoart, good, bad or ugly?
CE: It is great that the ability to make art is accessible to everyone. However, since there is now such an enormous amount of work being produced, it is a very important time for curators. Good curators ensures that the work gets to the appropriate audience. In addition, it is now important to have artists writing about other artists to ensure the work isn’t simply forgotten.
SF: What possibilities of the web are yet to be explored? Which dangers do you see ahead?
CE: The web is an excellent time wasting novelty. It will eventually become more corporate and future cultural producers will hijack it like they do now with television.
SF: Video broadcasting platforms on the internet, why or why not?
CE: I like that fact that work is now readily available, however, I still prefer watching films in the cinema rather than on-line. My ideal screening situation is one in which I am sitting in the dark, surrounded by my peers, communally emerged in the work presented before us, free of distractions.
SF: In what category would you place your work; cinema or art. And is there a difference between those?
CE: Ideally, I am attempting to make video art with filmic sensibilities. Of course, moving images are historically linked to the cinema and I feel this connection is an important one. However, I also feel it is time to drastically re-invent our concept of cinema. I personally prefer the freedom and the intimacy that the micro-cinema has to offer. I am also interested in some of the gimmicks used to turn standard screenings into events. I always find it enjoyable to watch live experimentation and to watch films with live music/narration/smell-o-vision/cetera.
SF: How important is the reaction to your film by the audience?
CE: Of course I would like the audience to be engaged with my work. It’s nice to receive a positive reaction to your work. That being said, I do not believe in compromising in order to make work that is in vogue.
SF: What is your next project about?
CE: Currently, I am making a brief documentary about the blasphenaut, a broken-up blastcore ensemble from Winnipeg that used a Playstation 2 game called Music Maker as their drummer and put on an amazing show. I am hoping to capture their energy and spirit in a short 15 minute documentary.
September 17, 2021. Anniversaire pour les 50 ans de Collectif Jeune Cinéma, Cinémathèque Temporaire, Mains d’Oeuvres, Paris, France.
May 3 – October 11, 2019. 30 años de Game Boy: Una consola en el mundo del arte, ETOPIA: Centro de Arte y Tecnología, Zaragoza, Spain. Curated by Carlota Santabárbara.
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November 18 – 26, 2011. Machinima, Gamerz Festival #7, ARCADE, Aix-en-Provence, France. Curated by Isabelle Arvers.
November 19, 2010. Avant-Game, 16th International Festival of Computer Arts, Maribor, Slovenia. Curated by Harrison Gish and Andrew Hall.
August 21, 2010. Basement Media Festival, Somerville, Massachusetts. Organized by LJ Frezza and Nicholas Tamburo.
May 7, 2010. Zero Film Festival, The Hexagon Space, Baltimore, Maryland.
April 30, 2010. Milwaukee Underground Film Festival, Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
April 20, 2010. Avant-Game, UCLA, Los Angeles, California. Curated by Harrison Gish and Andrew Hall.
March 13, 2010. Oslo Screen Festival, Filmens Hus, Oslo, Norway.
December 12, 2009. Invisible Dog Gallery, Brooklyn, New York.
December 12, 2009. textures argentiques/matières numériques [Found Footage], 11th Festival des Cinémas Différents de Paris, Paris, France.
December 4, 2009. The Medium is the Message, Trinity Lounge, Gallery Lambton, Sarnia, Ontario. Curated by Cameron Starr.
November 20 – 30, 2009. Streaming Festival 4th Edition, The Hague, The Netherlands.
September 26, 2009 namaTRE.ba 3, Academy of Fine Arts, Trebinje, Bosnia and Herzegovina. Curated by Igor Bosnjak.
July 31, 2009. I want my Chinatown to Welcome Me Home, Golden City Fine Art, Winnipeg, Manitoba. Curated by Vanessa Rigaux.
June 7, 2009. Festival of (In)appropriation #1, Los Angeles Filmforum, Los Angeles, California. Curated by Jaimie Baron and Andrew Hall.