Tag: Futur

A new video for Futur by the steady hands of Yoan Taillandier.

It must be nice for a filmer to film a small team with such major talent and style. But above all the team really gets along and as such the general vibe of this video is pleasant, to say the least.

Featuring:

Juan Saavedra, Santiago Sasson, Karl Salah and Oscar Candon.

For a lot of you, FUTUR might be an unknown brand, but who can blame them? The brand does not have a Snapchat, Instagram or a Facebook account and their website hasn’t been updated in a while. At first glance, it’s kind of special in this day and age that you can see products in your stream before you see it on the street or in the shops, but that is just what Dutch-born Felix Schaper and Parisian Ben Frédonie don’t want! They want you to discover their brand via a magazine, a friend or a shop, “This is the first time we are doing an article in a magazine.” Felix tells me. Rather than making waves, the focus lies in creating a high-quality product that can survive without the hype and can compete with other high-end brands. Like trends, hype can die down quickly. Instead, the brand moves at its own pace and in its own way. It is always more exciting to “find” something than to have it shoved in your face. That search makes the people that know FUTUR come back for more every time they have a new drop.

By Roland Hoogwater

futur-lowres-2

How did FUTUR as a brand come about and what was the initial idea behind starting the brand?

Ben and I do the brand. The idea was to start a premium apparel line and do fun projects. A lot of ‘fashion apparel brands’ use skateboarding for image purposes but in fact, they don’t give anything back to the community. Ideally, we wanted to switch things around with FUTUR. We want to sell good quality premium products that can compete with other high-end brands and still be able to take our crew on skate trips.

As far as I can tell from your new lookbook, you produce most of the products in Europe and a small portion in the US. How important is manufacturing in first world regions for you as a brand?

We produce all of our textiles in Europe. The caps are done in the US. This is purely a quality related decision. The factory where the clothes are made is very important to a brand and we’ve been very lucky to find the right one. We are not against producing outside of Europe but it is easier and faster to work close to home.

Who decides the direction the brand goes in both visually and conceptually?

It is just me and Ben. We make all the decisions regarding the quality of products and the direction of the brand. We were both working for other brands before FUTUR and you always have to deal with a lot of bureaucracy when it comes to making decisions. Now we are on our own calling all the shots.

futur-lowres-3

Do you make your own designs or do you work with other designers?

Again it’s just us. Ben is more skilled than me at finding new fits and lining out the product. I’m more involved in overseeing the graphic design side of things: the colors of the collection, the layouts and so on. For now, we haven’t had the means to hire another person but ideally we would like to find someone who can help us out with the production side of things.

There are recurring designs every season. What those graphics do mean to the brand?

We’ve got some graphic parts like the capital F and the No.1 woman graphic that reoccur in almost every collection. It’s kind of like a logo I guess. Every collection we work on starts with the colors. We pick a limited amount of colors and build the collection from there. It’s a good way to built a coherent collection that looks good on the rack. We do not do too many color options on a piece. Maybe two max depending on the styles.

How does the connection between fashion and skateboarding function? (It seems like a lot of people are inspired by the skateboard lifestyle and vice versa)

Like I said before, skateboarding is very visible nowadays. It used to be more tight-knit and now it’s way more reachable for everybody through the Internet. It can function but sometimes the fashion industry comes up with some pretty boneheaded shit. But so do skaters (laughs).

futur-lowres-4

Why did you decide to create a FUTUR skate team and how important is it to the brand?

It’s very important to us. Almost every penny we earn goes into our trips (laughs). Guys like Santiago (Sasson) and Juan (Saavedra) have basically been there since day one. Juan was having beers with us when we came up with the name months before we started the brand in 2014. So, the connection is quite tight. We’ve done most of the lookbooks with them and ask for their opinion regarding the products. We try to involve them as much as possible.

How do the Timeline edits connect to the rest of the brand? Because it feels like way more than just a skate edit in which the team skates in the clothes.

When it comes to the Timeline videos we usually work with Yoan (Taillandier) so obviously he has a lot of input in the way the videos look and feel. We try to go on trips as often as possible. We really like the format of +/- 5 minute videos. It is not like a full video. We see it more as the result of a tour and the footage from that tour is what we try to edit in a nice way. If the timing is right, we give the crew some new samples to skate in and ideally we try to drop the clips around the time the new collection ships out. But if it doesn’t fit or we feel there isn’t enough footy we don’t force it. Apart from the team, we also like having guests and friends in our clips.

Coming back to the direction of the brand, what are some of the future goals for the company and in what way do you feel the company has evolved from the first season up until this one (season 3)?

Season 0 consisted of like 10 pieces. Six drops later, we are at Season 03 consisting of close to 60 pieces. At the same time, the number of shops that carry FUTUR has grown each season. For the future, we’d ideally like to have a real office to start with 🙂 possibly in combination with a photo studio that we and our friends can use and continue to go on cool trips and develop some more technical products. Maybe we might even open an Instagram account (laughs).

futur-lowres-5

Santiago Sasson is all about three things: ambience, communication and community. He skates for companies that represent those values like Magenta and Futur – both “smaller” companies with a strong identity. After some failed attempts at meeting in a bar, we ventured out to his office, where Santiago and his mother – who is also his boss – work on different types of architectural projects, from creating new office spaces and shops to remodeling homes and storefronts. I wonder if he ever had the balls to skate on something he created for a client. Funny enough I never got to ask that because our discussion seemed to never end. One train of thought followed the next and all of them were worth exploring. We have been waiting for someone like Santiago to elaborate and explain some of the thoughts and questions we as skateboarders have always had.

By Roland Hoogwater
Photos: Danny Sommerfeld

santi-lowres-02

As skateboarders we move through urban environments that were designed by an architect. You chose to become an architect just like your mother, the difference being that you are also a skater. What happened to you when those two worlds collided?

In my seven years of studying architecture, my vision of skateboarding totally changed. It took me seven years of studying to finish my degree and it was an interesting process for me being both a skater and an architect. A lot of time’s though, I feel like people don’t understand my position. As an architect, I am supposed to build, but at the same time, most people feel like skateboarders are destroying architecture (urban things). In reality, we are not destroying anything we are reacting with our mind and our bodies to the environment that we are in. That is why I feel that skateboarding is an art! In art, everybody can formulate their own answer, translate that into skating and you can see that every skateboarder has their own vision and response (tricks) to those surroundings. Architecture is similar. One architect might feel like using wood, metal or brick. Another architect might feel the best thing to do is to go with more modern styles and materials. When you finish your studies, you are not really an architect yet. You were taught some skills but it’s even more important to learn how to re-learn things. In a sense, you are always researching who you are, what you want to achieve and how you want the end result to look and feel.

Sounds similar to what people learn in art schools. What do you feel are the core values of architecture?

Historically, architecture fills one of the most basic needs of the human species. Cavemen used the basic ideas of architecture to make their cave into a livable space. Skateboarding and architecture are two microcosms, and as a person that does both, I find myself using (appropriating) existing space as a skateboarder. All of those spaces, most of them public, were thought up by an architect. The definition of public space is that the space is available for use by everyone! In that space, we all can do whatever we want. Still, we as skateboarders get kicked out and that is because we are not using that space in a way that fits with the codes and ideas that people have about public spaces. But if we look at the law itself, we have the right to be there and use it in our own way. In the end, it is not about the law, it is about the way that people view what we do. They see us as people who damage things that were built with tax money. What they seem to forget is that we pay taxes and our money also goes towards cleaning and fixing all sorts of things–things like dog piss or broken bus stops. The question that we need to think about is: how do we live in and with the city together? Of course, we can do whatever we want, but we do need to respect the others around us. Place de la République is a good example: it is a new space that people want to use and that is where the problems start. When they sit on a bench they feel like it is theirs, or they walk across the square in a specific line because it is “their” line. When you are skating, it is hard to deal with those things. Skaters discovered the plaza quite early on and they also feel like they have a claim to certain places at République. We all know it can be frustrating if you have been skating a ledge for three hours and some dude suddenly sits down and takes that space from you. The important part is not to confront the person in a stressful way but rather to communicate and explain what you are trying to do. The goal is to create a valuable exchange with that person, a compromise that respects both your rights to be there and to use that space in your own way.

santi-lowres-3

Is that exchange already happening at Rèpublique?

In a way it is. The new generation that is growing up now is more familiar with skateboarding. They see it on the television on a daily basis. In turn, they have a better understanding. Previous generations might not have had access to a television, let alone the Internet. Your own grandmother might look at a skateboarder and have no clue what she is even seeing, so they only see the result: people falling down, marks on a ledge, loud noise, and scared dogs. I think it is our job to open peoples minds and make them understand not only what we are doing but also why it makes us happy. For a lot of people, the plaza has a symbolic value. That value may vary from functioning as a monument to the revolution or the terrorist attacks, but even though it is a very mixed and busy place in Paris, everyone is in his or her own world! That is the root of the problem. Unfortunately, changing that is a long process and we have not succeeded in finding a good way to communicate that allows us to share public spaces without conflicts. We need to look beyond our differences and find the thing which connects us to one another. An example of finding that thing which connects us is you guys being here. We all have different parents, from different cultures, speaking different languages but because of skateboarding we are now talking to each other. For me, a skateboard is like a passport. You can go everywhere and meet other people. They will show you around their city and you get to see different places, spaces, and the ambiences.

santi-lowres-5

FS Flip – Photo: Benjamin Deberdt

You were born and are still living in a city that is famous for its ambience. Do you feel like something has changed?

Paris has been changing a lot, thanks to places like République and the new crews full of young people. Formerly, the city was divided into different crews like the Bastille crew, the Bercy crew or the Le Dome crew. Those groups of people would not skate together but thanks to projects like Parisii and a platform like Live Skateboard Media, cruising the city together has become part of the way skaters in Paris skate. The great thing about the Parisii project is that it showed the different vibes that each part of the city has through showing skaters using the city’s architecture. The crew mentality is still there but now there is a greater sense of community. At the same time, the speed of social media channels allows us to see where your friends are skating while you are out skating and at the same time the whole world can watch. A lot of brands from overseas started to notice our city and the ambience it has. Basically, skateboarding in Paris is like skateboarding in a museum.

The space around us has a big influence on the way we feel. Living in a house that is dark is different from a house that lets in a lot of light. How do you see the effects of your surroundings and how do you take them into account?

What you are saying is true. Some people need the sun to be happy! If that person moves from Hawaii to London, that will actually change that person’s mood. We as architects enter into the life of a person or a group. It is our job to translate what the client is telling us and incorporate that into our plans. The problem is that not everybody is able to put words to their feelings. A lot of times they do not want us to enter their “Jardin Prive”. They freak out if they feel like one can look inside and see what they really want, discovering their secrets. The client wants to remain in control: “You are working for me.“ But as an architect, I need to look into a person’s mind to do just that. If I cannot see what you really want, how can I draw up a plan that suits your needs and wishes? People often forget living is about the details, for example: the bedroom door, if somebody is used to opening their door a certain way and I change that without understanding the client’s needs, they open that door and start the day doing something they do not like. This “reading” of the client is subjective and that is why it is important for people to find an architect that suits them. I spend a lot of time thinking: is this what I want to do or is this what the client wants? The answers is both–it is what I want based on what they need. In the end, I am not working for myself. I am working for the client who needs to be satisfied and happy with my work from the beginning to the end of a project, which can last from six months to three years or more. It is important to have a good relationship with your employer. If I have a day off and show the wrong emotions, that could influence the whole process. I have to leave my ego at home so I can do the work I need to do. Sometimes this includes lying to the client so that they feel like it was their idea instead of mine because if the client feels like it is his own idea he is more confident in the decisions that lay ahead. It is like a long tightrope walk to get to the end of a project. You have to document everything and if you do not do this accurately there can be some serious consequences! Architects have landed in jail because of issues that arise after a construction process. The people you are working for can turn into your worst enemies if they are not happy or if they find a flaw. That is why I keep a file with all the emails, bills, notes and more. When it comes down to it and things have to be fought out through lawyers, it is not my word against the clients. After I finished school, I finally saw the reality of what architecture really is and that it takes a lot of time, a lot of time! And that is why I need skateboarding. Skateboarding is the activity into which I put all my energy, whether it be through a trick or the social aspect, it is what I need to level out and relax. When I skate I feel like I have no problems at all.

santi-lowres-7

Last week PLACE issue 56 landed in the mail and when an issue is done it is time to host a little get together. Of course the event had be in Paris and while we where out there working on the issue we had found the perfect place. So when the time came we linked up with the people from Chez Justine to set the right atmosphere, it all turned out well and it was a great evening.

Special thanks to Converse and FUTUR for supporting the event.

Photography by Danny Sommerfeld

place-paris-event-header

On the 7th of April we will launch the new Paris / Paname issue together with Converse / FUTUR and Chez Justine. We would like to celebrate this with you at Chez Justine on 96 Rue Oberkampf in Paris. The evening will start at 10 PM. See you in Paris!

To go to our Facebook event click here!

The brand new PLACE issue 56 “Paris / Paname” will be available through skateshops, selected retailers and newsstands – some of the shops got the issue already, just ask!

The concept behind our current issue is to explore the booming Parisian skate scene, to visit people, who are a staple in Paris but also the ones who are not as well known but deserve a platform. We met a lot of exciting people while working on this issue, we were out there experiencing Paris with them. As with the last issue the work we do has become personal to us and we believe you can feel the Paris vibe as we felt it when you’ll read this issue.

Here’s a little sneak peak…

DSCF3602
Santiago Sasson “Jardin Privé” – Interview

DSCF3629
Manuel Schenck Portfolio – A Contemporary

DSCF3663
A Cruise Through Paname – Spending Time with Parisians feat. Edouard Depaz, Joseph Bias and more

DSCF3669
Jason Dill ’16 – Interview by Benjamin Deberdt

DSCF3686
FUTUR – From the Shadows

DSCF3692
Alex Pires “City Elements” feat. Ben Kadow, Tyshawn Jones, Joffrey Morel, Max Geronzi, Paul Grund and Sage Elsesser.

Get your copy HERE.