A few months ago, we were at Habitual (known for being a streetwear retail store, art gallery and magazine) for their one year anniversary show — New Wave.
Photographer: Marcus Cheong
In conjunction with 1km: Jalan Besar (a travelling exhibition showcasing artists' studios and artistic stores), the folks at Habitual celebrated their one year anniversary by showcasing fresh faces of contemporary street art. We caught up with Marc to find out more about this installation:
Congrats on the one year anniversary! What has changed in the last year?
I think the biggest change is that we started out with a fashion focus but over the year, we have slowly brought art to the forefront. When we talk about street culture, people naturally think fashion first, and that’s what we initially focused on too; but we want to elevate all of street culture as a whole, and art is a big part of that which we have increasing placed more focus on.
You’re huge supporters and advocates of mixing fashion and other art forms — what’s your view on wearable art and why was it important to provide a space for them?
Well, it’s not mutually exclusive to fashion. We are huge advocates of challenging creative and collaborative norms as the world is getting too small and flat for borders and boundaries. And just like the topic on street fashion collaborating with high fashion —
the stigma with wearable art is only prevalent in elitism, so we have no problem with it as long as it’s done, albeit subjective, well.
What are your greatest dilemmas as art curators and how do you overcome them?
The greatest dilemma would again be the subjectivity of it.
The art shows that we’ve put up don’t have an over-intellectualised feel about them because we don’t want to intimidate our audience — so it’s simply what we hope people can easily digest and appreciate. As they say, one man's meat is another man's poison.
What types of art fuel you on a daily basis?
Recently we’ve been obsessed with the works of a Thai street artist, Rukkit. His geometric works are pretty cool and inspiring.
Why ‘New Wave’?
At Habitual, we are always on the look-out for the next generation of creators and creatives within the sub-culture scene in Asia and the world.
New Wave is the summation of that desire: A travelling and constantly evolving street art show where we will showcase the fresh faces of the contemporary street art world; and the best thing about it is that we get to promote local and regional talent around the world.
Where does the power lie in art curation?
The intended audience.