A collective future might seem like a utopia for most, but to London based Colectivo Futuro, such lofty ideals are but a tangible work in progress. We talk with Colectivo co-founder Miguel Colmenares about their upcoming exhibition, and the interconnectedness of a London-New York state of mind.
Q) Tell us a bit about Colectivo Futuro…
Colectivo Futuro is a dedicated cultural node where art forms and people converge. Formed by a collective of artists, DJs, musicians, and to put it simply people who have an appreciation for various artistic mediums and a given lifestyle associated with creative enterprises; we are committed to showcasing and collaborating with individuals and brands that we feel carry a passionate approach and a common aesthetic.
Our aim is to bring exposure to the work of creatives from all parts, whether visual or audible, who are devoted to innovating their medium, or bringing a new light on the traditional.
Q) What was the inspiration behind your forthcoming Collective Futures exhibition?
We put on our first exhibition last year in London with a similar name – Collective Futures 001. The idea behind it was to bring together a few of the things we’ve been covering online in a physical setting. For the past few years we’ve been focusing mainly on music led events and we wanted to try and flip that sideways by making the visual content the focus of an event. We had 4 visual artists, in that case all hailing from Japan, together with 3 local DJs, and also a creative food collective called Extracts London. On that exhibition we collaborated with NY based graphic designer Larry Mayorga, who designed the poster for us. We got to talking after the event and said “why don’t we do something similar in NY?”. Soon after, I realized a few of the artists we had already written about were based there and the pieces started falling together organically after that.
The theme of the exhibition is “what connects you to New York” and we want to explore how everyone involved has been interacting with the city since moving there from other cities or countries and how the city has affected their creative output, wether visual or audible.
Q) What does Collective Futures as a concept mean to you?
Collective Futures is all about collaboration really. From the experience gathered after our first exhibition and while planning this next one, it’s been very much about the people that have jumped into the project to collaborate in one way or another without expecting anything in return. Collective Futures is also about getting creative people together to show their work and interact with a very social audience. Sometimes we are frustrated with the way art exhibitions are very one directional; meaning you are expected to walk in, look at the works hanging from the wall, and walk right out. We want to encourage people to stick around and socialize a bit as well.
Q) Why did you chose to NY as the ‘City’ for your social art experiment?
It all came from our first collaboration with Larry Mayorga from meta-matic for our first exhibition. It also helped that we were planning on visiting the US for a few days anyways and we’ve been wanting to go back to NY for a while. So we thought hmmm, why not make our visit much more interesting by attempting to curate an exhibition there and getting some of our favorite artists involved while engaging a new crowd.
Q) What is your defining memory of NY?
It’s been a few years since we last visited, but a lasting memory is definitely the hustle and bustle of a city that never stops moving. It gives a constant impression of change, whether good or bad; and I’m sure everything will look and feel different this time around. Hopefully the best memories are yet to come!
Q) What is your aim with putting on such a type of event? And what type of outcome do you wish for?
We just love working with creative people and if we get a chance to put a bunch of them together in the same room to create something unique and awesome it would be silly not to. Of course one of our main aims is to give the artists involved as much exposure as possible. But ultimately we hope that the collaborations that have come about while planning the event become lasting relationships and they bring more collaborations in the future, wether it’s with us or between the artists involved or someone who just happened to come by to check out the exhibition.
Q) You’ve even got mixologist as part of the event creating arty cocktails. What will the bartender be putting aside for you?!
Unfortunately we had to pull the plug on this idea. We really didn’t think alcohol laws and liquor license issues were going to be such a pain in the backside. We’re going to have to settle for beers this time around, but we’ll make the cocktail idea happen next time. We just need to find another great venue which already has a license handy.