People often ask about my inspirations and how I developed @the14thfactory. This is my story...
It is a miracle we opened at all.
We are so used to seeing some new thing in the media, all put together, money and branding, overnight superstars, often already superstars, we don't see the endless creatives who deserve the opportunity and don't make it.
We should have been one of those non-stories; nearly made it, failed, forgotten.
We had no glorious ad campaign, big gallery partner, big brand sponsorship, a grant from a foundation, no VC investment, super art patron, and so many hurdles.
But somehow we did it.
No fanfare, celeb endorsement, PR, social media influencers, in a real neighborhood, on our last legs, we opened. And we were loved and made an impact on everyone who came, other than a few of the cynical (there's always a few haters) mostly people that could use a hug!
The only reason we survived is I liquidated everything I own (not much) and a bunch of friends, collectors of my work in HK, agreed to loan me some money to survive. I won't name them but I am happy to still be friends with all, eternally grateful, and will be sure to include them in our future success, which is coming soon!
And a lot of people, friends old and new, jumped in to help, work, gave time and energy, contribute in all kinds of ways to make sure we existed. And those people are still here today which blows my mind. I'm not the hero of this story and I look forward to the documentary that reveals them all.