An interview I did with James Fuentes was recently published in Office Magazine. I met James when I moved to downtown New York City in the fall of 2003, when he was working for Jeffrey Deitch. I shared a loft studio on Grand and Crosby, down the street there was a vortex of cultural activity coming from Deitch Projects. They had skate ramps, hosted art parades and workshops, and they brought a populist tone to a part of the art world which made the myth of being a career artist feel attainable.
The incredible spontaneity and energy of that time was characterized by geography, in particular, the loose divisions between public and private spaces. James Fuentes was the first person that I knew of who decided to go out on his own to start his own gallery space. I recently met up with him at Cafe Katja on Orchard Street to find out how his enterprise came into being.