Get Access to Print and Digital for $23.99.
Subscribe for Full Access

From a conversation with Werner Herzog, conducted by Ian Michna for Jenkem, a skateboarding magazine.

ian michna: Can you hear me?

werner herzog: I can see you.

ian michna: You sound great.

herzog: Good.

ian michna: What was your first thought when someone asked, “Oh, you know, what do you know about skateboarding?”

herzog: I am puzzled because I am not familiar with the scene of skateboarding. At the same time, I had the feeling, yes, that’s my people. You have to accept trial and error. And I see them doing a certain jump or trying to slide on a metal rail, and they do it twenty-five times and fail.

ian michna: Yeah.

herzog: It’s good that you accept failure.

ian michna: He tried it so many times on so many different days.

herzog: It’s not too good to his pelvis.

ian michna: I wanted to ask you about physical feats because in an interview you said that what David Blaine does, where he holds his breath underwater for a long period of time, is not something you’re into. How is that different from ski jumping or flying or skateboarding?

herzog: David Blaine shouldn’t be trusted. His absurd quests are meant only for his own shining out.

ian michna: I’m curious what you think of this guy who skated in a museum?

herzog: Fine, why not?

ian michna: I’m curious, in skating there’s a camera that’s very popular. It’s a Sony cam. Have you fallen in love with a camera before?

herzog: No.

ian michna: Let’s say you were to shoot skateboarding. Let’s say you went to Venice Beach. What would the soundtrack be?

herzog: That’s a good question. What comes to mind first and foremost are Russian Orthodox church choirs.

ian michna: [Laughs]

herzog: What you are doing is bordering the sacred.

ian michna: Thank you. On behalf of us skaters, we consider you a skateboarder.

herzog: I accept.

More from

| View All Issues |

June 2009

“An unexpectedly excellent magazine that stands out amid a homogenized media landscape.” —the New York Times
Subscribe now