FEATURING: Davi Leventhal
What do the words "Creative Community" bring to mind for you? How do you feel is the best way to utilize members in a Creative Community?
The idea of a “creative community” makes me think of the Renaissance and the way that artists and other intelligentsia worked together and shared their discoveries. Basically, it makes me think of a group of creative people who inspire and support each other.
Name the biggest challenge you have had in your career to date. How did you solve it?
The biggest challenge for me has been my “outsider” status: I am a first-generation immigrant from Brazil, and the first in my family to try to “make it” as a visual artist. Luckily, I received a lot of encouragement when I was young, and in the past few years, have actively been building a network of creatives whose work I really believe in. Having a strong community is really important!
What was your first “Big Break” in your profession?
I think that forming my company, pillowtalk | fine art (www.pillowtalkfineart.com), was the best thing I could have done as an artist. These days, it can be really difficult for emerging artists to navigate the so-called “art world”, and it has been an incredible learning opportunity for me. We offer a variety of services to support artists, and working with our team of museum and gallery professionals is a constant source of inspiration.
What's in your backpack/handbag/tote right now?
Right now, I’m carrying a sketchbook, pens, pencils, an eraser, and 'The Society of the Spectacle' by Guy Debord. I still do sketches of people on the subways while riding underground.
Do you have any advice for someone starting out in your creative profession?
Study business in school, even just one class. Don't only be an artist--teach yourself the business angle, too. Not enough art schools teach the business end of things, leaving artists lost in a sea of marketing and advertising.
What are some of your favorite places/books/blogs/websites for inspiration?
Whenever I’m in a creative rut, I go to museums! I think the American Museum of Natural History is the best place to think in the whole of New York City. While I am working, I also love to listen to Ted Talks or put on a good documentary.
What would be your DREAM ASSIGNMENT?
I love projects with elements of public engagement and social consciousness, like Vik Muniz’s 'WASTE LAND' or JR’s 'Inside Out'. I believe that artists have a responsibility to help those who have no voice.
What would be your last supper?
I would have to go to Tokyo to enjoy some of the finest sushi in the world at Sukiyabashi Jiro.
Davi will be having an exhibition of his works in May 2016. See www.daylightfactory.nyc for more details.
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