2016 was the first year for ComplexCon and not knowing how it would be or what it was like, I hit the “Fuck It” button and was the very first brand to sign up for it. It turned out to be one of the great gamble to take. ComplexCon 2016 was a huge success for Never Made, As soon as it was over I already had my eye on 2017.
ComplexCon 2017 was a completely different monster. BIGGER, BUSIER AND LOUDER Than the previous year. Again, N.M was the firs to sign up and register for this year. With the hype and success of last year’s ComplexCon, the team and I knew that we had to elevate our presence and stand bold against the norm.
From last year to this year, N.M has grown exponentially. From the milestone collaboration with my mentor, and friend, Shepard Fairey, to releasing many new prints this year, I wanted to showcase the growth and evolution of the art. To assure that the art was the focal point of the booth and Never Made as a whole. Further driving home the idea that this is an Art based brand. I decided to get the 20x10 booth rather than last year’s 10x10 booth size. The bigger booth provide the space to create a gallery-like experience for the guests while still allowing me and my team to be interactive and get to know everyone that came by the booth.
I laid out the wall to be bold and eye catching. Setting a trap for the passer by. This was my first time showcasing most of my work. I get so caught up in creating that i never really noticed how much stuff i've put out already. Twenty-three individual pieces of artwork being displayed on one wall, each one with its own story; four of which have yet to be released and were being shown for the first time. A " Soft Release" if you will. There was something for everyone. I've been tinkering with a new colorway with the Bloom Lotus and Weight,print. Which i'm really stoked on. It was the perfect opportunity to test the response and feedback of the new colors. They received a positive response.
At ComplexCon 2016, the limited custom made denim jackets made its introduction and flew off the rack. This year, I brought them back. Each jacket is a vintage Levis jacket that i thrifted throughout the year and hand distressed, making each jacket unique and different from one another. Every jacket was chain stitched with the word “Never” by my pal, Ben Goetting from World Famous Original. Along with the chain stitching, I also decorated with a collection of pins that are no longer available and will never be made again. On the back, the oversized "Still Life" patch i designed is hand stitched then hot pressed onto it. Finally, each jacket is washed multiple times to fade and soften the denim, The process is extensive and grueling, by the final product makes all the sweat and cuts worth it at the end.
Art being the core and heart of Never Made, the art breathes life in many ways. One of my favorite mediums is neon light sculptures. This year, I made two new neon signs for. The first one being the The Art of Drowning. The second sign brought it back to the elementary days, where everyone drew the iconic “S” made with two sets of three parallel lines connected with diagonal lines. It was everywhere in the 90s and invoked nostalgia of our childhood. It resonated well with 90's kids of my generation.
Finally, my first book. This was my favorite thing to make and the thing I was most excited for people to see. The book is a collection of work i've done over the years since the birth of Never Made and before. I was blown away on how well it came out and the reception to it.
Overall, ComplexCon 2017 was huge success. I love doing these events because it allows me to meet everyone, connect with new people, and establish projects for the future. The reception and kind words from everyone that came by the booth and spoke with me and the team is taken with gratitude and appreciation. Thank you, I say it with all honestly, I would not be here if it wasn’t for you guys, my supporters. Thank you! 2018 is coming soon, I'm excited to show share with you what the team and I have planned. Stay tuned! We thick!
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