Scandinavian Music Video Director Takes Home Top Honors at Film Festival

Martin Garde Abildgaard took home the “Best of Festival – Music Video” award at the recent Richmond International Film Festival.
Photo via Martin Garde Abildgaard

Music & Arts

Scandinavian Music Video Director Takes Home Top Honors at Film Festival

Martin Garde Abildgaard took home the “Best of Festival – Music Video” award at the recent Richmond International Film Festival for good reason: His sophisticated and provocative telling of birth is the perfect backdrop to the thumping and trance-like beats of “Organ” by Thomas Bertelsen, the DJ behind TOM and His Computer.

Crowds loved the video at the Swedish Match-sponsored festival.

But how did the video come to be?

“I’ve known Thomas for a couple of years and we had been talking about how cool it would be to create something together,” Abildgaard said via a Skype interview. “Finally, he sent me a couple tracks, and ‘Organ’ was one of them. ‘Organ’ spoke to me in a certain way. It gave me this feeling of being between dream and reality.”

Running just over three minutes, the moody and stylized video was shot over a five-day period on the west coast of Denmark in Ulfborg.

“I wanted to tell the stories of unstoppable journeys that destiny sometimes gives us, and one of our biggest journeys is to be born,” Abildgaard explained. “And I found it interesting to use this very specific process as a setting for a story.”

Martin Garde Abildgaard took home the “Best of Festival – Music Video” award at the recent Richmond International Film Festival.
Photo via Martin Garde Abildgaard

At the 15-second mark, viewers glimpse an indistinguishable object floating in a milky trough. The object emerges as a man’s leg. While the scene is rich and fluid, like any production, the final product required a lot of work from the crew. After searching around Ulfborg’s countryside, the team procured an old and unused trough to use for the scene. Previously the trough was used to wash off freshly slaughtered pigs in boiling water – the crew cleaned up the trough as best as they could. Actor Christian Diaz was unfazed and submerged himself into the pool of water.

The remaining video is a visual dance that entertains and stimulates viewers.

“Organ” is just one of Abildgaard’s many projects. In addition to music videos, he directs art and commercial films.

To keep up with his work, visit http://www.martingarde.com.

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