Freedom is a German board company that Bartosz Ciesielski has operated out of the tranquil city of Iserlohn with a lot of passion, lifeblood, and rock and roll spirit since 2002. Whereas skateboarding has put on a more art school-ish flavor over the last couple of years, the guys over at Freedom have always stayed true to themselves and continue to tackle the meanest rails and gaps that can be found in their faithful working-class style. Their finally released full-length “Psychedelic Penetration” is no exception and keeps the stair count at a high level. We asked Bartosz a few questions.
Well, I wish I could skate every rail just like that: perfect surface, no cracks… Just skate, have a session, and if you’re up for it, get on a rail – that’d be a dream. Skating handrails is just the sickest shit and I’d rather skate them with plywood than not at all, and since there are way too little with a good run-up in this country, the plywood came into play. Even though I’ve thought to myself every so often, “Hey, I’m really not up for this plywood shit right now.”
I think it’s different for every Freedom team rider. For me, it’s like this: when I feel like moshing down a handrail or gap, it basically reflects the fact that I want to live – even if you almost kill yourself for that sometimes. It is and feels like the music of the hottest rock and roll band of the ‘70s, you let go and have nothing to lose… although you could die. It is at this moment that I live my life most intensely. That is Psychedelic Penetration.
It’s not easy and it doesn’t work without looking left and right with regards to your income. It was and is always about living out my dream: having my own skate company with an active team, my own full-length video projects, local support, trips, and everything a skater’s heart desires. It has always been important to me that the team is not a mixed bunch of random athletes but friends who are down with each other and want to put out something cool out of their shared passion and as long as that’s the case, I’m willing to do additional part-time jobs once in a while.
In short, I was of the opinion that it simply wasn’t done yet. Some bangers and last tricks were still missing for it to be a real full-length. Basically, we wanted total penetration – as we always say – and we fully committed to that. Of course, I would’ve liked for the video to be finished sooner, but I don’t regret a single tour, trick, or slam. At this point, I would also like to express my thanks to two people: Dennis Harwardt, who was the driving force behind finishing the project and starting the editing and Christian Preuschoff, who pulled all-nighters with me with the greatest devotion. Thanks Tex, thanks Preusche!
Bartosz Ciesielski – Frontside Nosegrind
I miss when people first of all skated purely for themselves and for the fire that burns inside them. I don’t understand how people can spend their skate day filming each other in the skatepark with their phones rather than of having a session together. I also miss when video parts were truly celebrated by knowing every trick inside and out. Instead, video parts are thrown out daily as news and “abused” for the short-term kick – but that just makes them totally arbitrary.
I’d buy a team van and pay Dennis Harwardt, Christian Preuschoff, and Robert Christ as filmers and photographers. I’d put out more board graphics and sick clothing, go more on tours especially to some crazier parts of the world. I’d buy some new VX1000s and a new MK1 from Alex Denkiewicz, and I’d pay the team riders and organize for the whole team to go to Phantasialand [famous theme park in Germany] a couple of times a year – with obligatory roller coaster rides…