Whats your story?
We are Emilie Uriarte and Leonor Aispuro, cousins and owners of Arte Puro, a vintage inspired clothing line that uses vintage and artisan made textiles to create our garments. Where you originally from and why PHX?
Emilie was born in Los Angeles and Leonor was born in Mexico. Both were raised in Phx. We moved to New York to explore a different world, specifically fashion. After a few years we came back because Phx is home. Returning has let us focus on the projects we want to do next and to collaborate with other creatives.What’s the future hold for PHX?
Phoenix has a lot of opportunity. The creative community is beautiful; it’s flourishing. An aspirational future for Phoenix would be to develop a local fashion industry with textile development, garment production and to continue to work with our local community.https://www.facebook.com/ArtePuroPhotographer: Hector Raul Primero Models: Emilie Uriarte & Leonor Aispuro Location: Hole In The Rock at Papago Park

Whats your story?


We are Emilie Uriarte and Leonor Aispuro, cousins and owners of Arte Puro, a vintage inspired clothing line that uses vintage and artisan made textiles to create our garments. 

Where you originally from and why PHX?


Emilie was born in Los Angeles and Leonor was born in Mexico. Both were raised in Phx. We moved to New York to explore a different world, specifically fashion. After a few years we came back because Phx is home. Returning has let us focus on the projects we want to do next and to collaborate with other creatives.

What’s the future hold for PHX?


Phoenix has a lot of opportunity. The creative community is beautiful; it’s flourishing. An aspirational future for Phoenix would be to develop a local fashion industry with textile development, garment production and to continue to work with our local community.

https://www.facebook.com/ArtePuro

Photographer: Hector Raul Primero 
Models: Emilie Uriarte & Leonor Aispuro 
Location: Hole In The Rock at Papago Park

A break from the normal TRUPHX posts…

I’ve always had a curiosity about the buildings that once existed Downtown, one of those being the old FOX Theatre. After doing some research on The FOX I found several pictures online and decided to see where it once stood (south east corner of 1st Street and Washington) and to my dismay I came upon an empty lot.

I stood there and imagined what that corner once looked like, families w/kids coming in and out of the the theatre, teenagers on their first dates, local Phoencians watching “Psycho” and catching glimpses of Downtown Phoenix in the film. 

I snapped a picture of the lot and in photoshop superimposed an old picture of The FOX on top of the picture I took of the lot w/modern day Phoenix surrounding it and came up w/the picture above. Since then I’ve done several dozen other pictures and at the urging of family and friends I had a show during First Friday in May at Nostra Style House entitled  ”Forgotten Phoenix”.

The following pictures are what was on display and again I did these for fun and my own curiosity and not for profit.

If you repost any of the pics I ask that you please include the TRUPHX link.

Thank You and Enjoy!

What’s your story?
Gosh! How far back do you want me to start? My name is Candy Jimenez and I am a Dancer, Choreographer, Teacher, and I am the Artistic Director of Dulce Dance Company. I received my Bachelors of Fine Arts in Dance Education at Arizona State University. I believed that I didn’t need a degree to prove that I can dance and choreograph, but that if I wanted an easier time finding a job that involved and kept me closer to dance, a degree would certainly make things easier. It has. I also teach dance at Cesar Chavez High School. Teaching at Cesar Chavez has helped me be more successful with dance including giving me tools to utilize with Dulce Dance. I found even more love of dance through teaching. Dancing and Choreographing give me great outlets towards expression and fulfill me as an artist, but teaching dance to other people, especially youth is fulfilling and gives me the opportunity to show the power of dance. I am able to give back by helping dance to thrive. I come from a big family with seven children and most of us have been touched by art. The whole family is still in the Phoenix area.
I earned my BFA at Arizona State University and was awarded the “Outstanding Undergraduate Dance Major” from the National Dance Association.  I continued my training at the Alvin Ailey American Dance Center in New York City.  Upon returning to the Valley, I joined Desert Dance Theatre as a Core Dancer, Choreographer, and Associate Artistic Director.  Through my work and studies with Desert Dance Theatre, Arizona State University, Alvin Ailey, New York, and Dulce I’ve worked with choreographers/artists such as Cliff Keuter, Elina Mooney, Lee Berger, Neta Pulvamacher, Jennifer Tsukayma, Mary Fitzgerald, Nina Watt, Denise Jefferson, HT Chen, Billbob Bown, Marion Jones, and teachers of Donald McKayle Intensive.  I recently worked with Pamela Pietro in performing a solo work about dark places.  I share my love of dance with my students at Cesar Chavez High School where I’ve taught for the past 11 years.  Wanting more of a choreographic voice and wanting to make change within the dance community in Arizona, I founded Dulce Dance Company and have been the Artistic Director, Choreographer, and Dancer for the company for the past 7 years.  I’ve also worked with Phoenix Artist Lee Berger and composer James Cerrachio in a new artistic production, Pensive Beauty.  Pensive Beauty is a sensual provocative piece about an artist’s life, losses, and adventures. I recently tried my talents in acting and was involved in The Vagina Monologues just this season.  
Where are you originally from and why PHX?
I am originally from Texas. I moved from there when I was eight years old so basically Phoenix is my home. My family had to start over here in Phoenix, as the economy and farming got very rough in Texas during that time. My dad brought us here, where we have stayed. I decided to stay in Phoenix as an adult but in the beginning I very much wanted to go off to a bigger city and dance. My family and ties kept me here and I thought why does it have to be a big city for me to do what I love. I decided that as Phoenix becomes a major big city it should have something to offer and that it was up to me to make that happen. So now, instead of me going through the trenches of the masses in trying to do what I love in a bigger city, I am here helping to lead it in Phoenix.
What’s the future hold for PHX?
Well this is Dulce’s 7th season and we continue to grow. My plan is to keep the company here in Phoenix where it has planted its roots and to cultivate a Phoenix dance community. There is a community here, but it still has a lot of growth to do and it still has to reach a wider audience. Dulce is part of the vision and I will head it. I want Dulce to outlive me and to continue strong in this city. I want to open Phoenix’s eyes to dance, my dance, and the dance of Dulce Dance Company. I want to impress upon people where they may be inspired, enriched, and motivated to express themselves.
Visit us at www.dulcedancecompany.com 
Like us at www.facebook.com/Dulcedancecompany

Photographers: Hector Primero & Brenda Davis
Models: Candy Jimenez, Liliana Gomez & Dulce Dance Co
Location: Inside Phoenix Center of The Arts 1202 N. 3rd St Phoenix, AZ 85003

What’s your story?

Gosh! How far back do you want me to start? My name is Candy Jimenez and I am a Dancer, Choreographer, Teacher, and I am the Artistic Director of Dulce Dance Company. I received my Bachelors of Fine Arts in Dance Education at Arizona State University. I believed that I didn’t need a degree to prove that I can dance and choreograph, but that if I wanted an easier time finding a job that involved and kept me closer to dance, a degree would certainly make things easier. It has. I also teach dance at Cesar Chavez High School. Teaching at Cesar Chavez has helped me be more successful with dance including giving me tools to utilize with Dulce Dance. I found even more love of dance through teaching. Dancing and Choreographing give me great outlets towards expression and fulfill me as an artist, but teaching dance to other people, especially youth is fulfilling and gives me the opportunity to show the power of dance. I am able to give back by helping dance to thrive. I come from a big family with seven children and most of us have been touched by art. The whole family is still in the Phoenix area.

I earned my BFA at Arizona State University and was awarded the “Outstanding Undergraduate Dance Major” from the National Dance Association.  I continued my training at the Alvin Ailey American Dance Center in New York City.  Upon returning to the Valley, I joined Desert Dance Theatre as a Core Dancer, Choreographer, and Associate Artistic Director.  Through my work and studies with Desert Dance Theatre, Arizona State University, Alvin Ailey, New York, and Dulce I’ve worked with choreographers/artists such as Cliff Keuter, Elina Mooney, Lee Berger, Neta Pulvamacher, Jennifer Tsukayma, Mary Fitzgerald, Nina Watt, Denise Jefferson, HT Chen, Billbob Bown, Marion Jones, and teachers of Donald McKayle Intensive.  I recently worked with Pamela Pietro in performing a solo work about dark places.  I share my love of dance with my students at Cesar Chavez High School where I’ve taught for the past 11 years.  Wanting more of a choreographic voice and wanting to make change within the dance community in Arizona, I founded Dulce Dance Company and have been the Artistic Director, Choreographer, and Dancer for the company for the past 7 years.  I’ve also worked with Phoenix Artist Lee Berger and composer James Cerrachio in a new artistic production, Pensive Beauty.  Pensive Beauty is a sensual provocative piece about an artist’s life, losses, and adventures. I recently tried my talents in acting and was involved in The Vagina Monologues just this season.  

Where are you originally from and why PHX?

I am originally from Texas. I moved from there when I was eight years old so basically Phoenix is my home. My family had to start over here in Phoenix, as the economy and farming got very rough in Texas during that time. My dad brought us here, where we have stayed. I decided to stay in Phoenix as an adult but in the beginning I very much wanted to go off to a bigger city and dance. My family and ties kept me here and I thought why does it have to be a big city for me to do what I love. I decided that as Phoenix becomes a major big city it should have something to offer and that it was up to me to make that happen. So now, instead of me going through the trenches of the masses in trying to do what I love in a bigger city, I am here helping to lead it in Phoenix.

What’s the future hold for PHX?

Well this is Dulce’s 7th season and we continue to grow. My plan is to keep the company here in Phoenix where it has planted its roots and to cultivate a Phoenix dance community. There is a community here, but it still has a lot of growth to do and it still has to reach a wider audience. Dulce is part of the vision and I will head it. I want Dulce to outlive me and to continue strong in this city. I want to open Phoenix’s eyes to dance, my dance, and the dance of Dulce Dance Company. I want to impress upon people where they may be inspired, enriched, and motivated to express themselves.

Visit us at www.dulcedancecompany.com

Like us at www.facebook.com/Dulcedancecompany


Photographers: Hector Primero & Brenda Davis

Models: Candy Jimenez, Liliana Gomez & Dulce Dance Co

Location: Inside Phoenix Center of The Arts 1202 N. 3rd St Phoenix, AZ 85003

What’s your story?
Hmmm, my story: I was a poor white kid who grew up in very ethnically diverse neighborhoods. This was probably one of the best things that could ever happened to me. Growing up with less-than-usual exposure to our systemic racism can only have been good for me. It also awoke me to our responsibilities to each other at an early age. I was in grade school when I started hearing my friends stories of being followed around in stores by the staff and realized that that didn’t happen to me, and why. Not that I’m perfect, but it definitely gave me a head start to try to be a non-racist, then an anti-racist. The next best thing that happened to me was theater. I was always involved in something performative from a young age, poetry contests and recitals. But in my sophomore year in high school we got this awesome new drama teacher, Robert Bullwinkle (Mr. B). He helped us create art, a community, and made us work very, very hard. He also taught us what it meant by art, in our case a performance, being more than the sum of its parts. Now, when I teach I get to be Mr. B. But these days, I get most of my inspiration and passion from my amazing wife and two awesome kids. 
Where are you originally from and why PHX?
I’m mostly from California, split between Fresno and Upland, a little town near Ontario, and year in Long Beach, although I was born in Spokane, WA. I moved to Phoenix to get away from CA when I was 19. It was too easy to live the good bachelor life there. When I first moved here I literally referred to Phoenix as a “rest stop in life.” But Phoenix has been very good to me and I really fell in love with it. Now I say, “There’s so much space here.” There’s space economically, physically, spiritually, etc. That space allows reinvention of yourself and your culture. 
What’s the future hold for PHX?
I think the future is bright for Phoenix. Although, I’m very aware of the politics of our state I find it frustrating that a community can be so hostile to some of it’s prime constituencies, meaning our brothers and sisters to the south. On the flip side we did just pass some new legislation providing more equal rights to the LGBTQ community. And, I think we have the right Mayor in office. I think the arts, even with some recent losses, seem to be wiser after the recession. And while it could just be that I’m in the mix, I truly believe that Phoenix will see strong growth and a cultural shift of the appreciation of the arts in the near future. But, that’s who I am. I believe in global citizenship, equal rights for people, and the power of those people to create something that’s greater than the sum of its parts. 




Joseph Benesh is the Director for the Phoenix Center Of The Arts, which provides opportunities to participate in the visual and performing arts through quality classes and programming. Classes are available for youth, adults and families. 
Find more info about Phoenix Center of the Arts click the following
http://phoenixcenterforthearts.org/

Photographer: Brenda Davis
Model: Joseph Benesh
Location: 1202 N. 3rd St Phoenix, AZ 85003

What’s your story?

Hmmm, my story: I was a poor white kid who grew up in very ethnically diverse neighborhoods. This was probably one of the best things that could ever happened to me. Growing up with less-than-usual exposure to our systemic racism can only have been good for me. It also awoke me to our responsibilities to each other at an early age. I was in grade school when I started hearing my friends stories of being followed around in stores by the staff and realized that that didn’t happen to me, and why. Not that I’m perfect, but it definitely gave me a head start to try to be a non-racist, then an anti-racist. The next best thing that happened to me was theater. I was always involved in something performative from a young age, poetry contests and recitals. But in my sophomore year in high school we got this awesome new drama teacher, Robert Bullwinkle (Mr. B). He helped us create art, a community, and made us work very, very hard. He also taught us what it meant by art, in our case a performance, being more than the sum of its parts. Now, when I teach I get to be Mr. B. But these days, I get most of my inspiration and passion from my amazing wife and two awesome kids. 

Where are you originally from and why PHX?

I’m mostly from California, split between Fresno and Upland, a little town near Ontario, and year in Long Beach, although I was born in Spokane, WA. I moved to Phoenix to get away from CA when I was 19. It was too easy to live the good bachelor life there. When I first moved here I literally referred to Phoenix as a “rest stop in life.” But Phoenix has been very good to me and I really fell in love with it. Now I say, “There’s so much space here.” There’s space economically, physically, spiritually, etc. That space allows reinvention of yourself and your culture. 

What’s the future hold for PHX?

I think the future is bright for Phoenix. Although, I’m very aware of the politics of our state I find it frustrating that a community can be so hostile to some of it’s prime constituencies, meaning our brothers and sisters to the south. On the flip side we did just pass some new legislation providing more equal rights to the LGBTQ community. And, I think we have the right Mayor in office. I think the arts, even with some recent losses, seem to be wiser after the recession. And while it could just be that I’m in the mix, I truly believe that Phoenix will see strong growth and a cultural shift of the appreciation of the arts in the near future. But, that’s who I am. I believe in global citizenship, equal rights for people, and the power of those people to create something that’s greater than the sum of its parts. 


Joseph Benesh is the Director for the Phoenix Center Of The Arts, which provides opportunities to participate in the visual and performing arts through quality classes and programming. Classes are available for youth, adults and families. 

Find more info about Phoenix Center of the Arts click the following

http://phoenixcenterforthearts.org/


Photographer: Brenda Davis

Model: Joseph Benesh

Location: 1202 N. 3rd St Phoenix, AZ 85003

What’s your story?
My name is Charlie Levy. I work at Crescent Ballroom and Stateside Presents.
Where are you originally from and why PHX?
I’m from Louisiana the Pelican State and I moved here to go to ASU.
What’s the future hold for PHX?
I honestly don’t have a clue I pretty much just do what I do and work at Crescent Ballroom and Stateside Presents. I wish I did know, but I don’t, sorry.
How did you come up w/the name “Crescent Ballroom”? 
I grew up seeing shows in the Crescent City a.k.a. New Orleans and the symbol of the early Phoenicians was the Crescent - put them both together - bam!
www.crescentphx.com & www.statesidepresents.com

Photographer: Alonso Parra


Model: Charlie Levy & the Crescent Ballroom Staff
Location: Crescent Ballroom 308 N 2nd Ave Phoenix, AZ

What’s your story?

My name is Charlie Levy. I work at Crescent Ballroom and Stateside Presents.

Where are you originally from and why PHX?

I’m from Louisiana the Pelican State and I moved here to go to ASU.

What’s the future hold for PHX?

I honestly don’t have a clue I pretty much just do what I do and work at Crescent Ballroom and Stateside Presents. I wish I did know, but I don’t, sorry.

How did you come up w/the name “Crescent Ballroom”?

I grew up seeing shows in the Crescent City a.k.a. New Orleans and the symbol of the early Phoenicians was the Crescent - put them both together - bam!

www.crescentphx.com & www.statesidepresents.com

Model: Charlie Levy & the Crescent Ballroom Staff

Location: Crescent Ballroom 308 N 2nd Ave Phoenix, AZ

What’s your story?
My name is Jesus Armenta and I am currently a Principal of a K-12th grade Charter school called New World Educational Center located in the central corridor of Phoenix. I have been an educator since 1999 and have loved every minute of it! Throughout my academic career I have had many great role models that, in my mind, believed in me. These role models have helped mold my philosophy of education, which is, that everyone can achieve any goal as long as they believe in it. Also, I am grateful to my parents, family and friends because I have learned that work ethic contributes to anyone’s success.
My dedication to education has been to help everyone, but especially the kids that no one believes in. I have been given chances through out my life, and I believe that everyone deserves the same. My decision to become an educational leader came from knowing that I can help other teachers take ownership of the same philosophy I have. Our future needs us, and that is why I am here…to make them believe that they can succeed.
Where are you originally from and why PHX?
I was born and raised in Phoenix! Being a native Phoenician has its advantages; meeting people with drive in their life. Many successful friends and colleagues, who were also given chances, have come to the school to talk about their experiences to the students. What a great way to help our kids, giving them an opportunity to meet successful people that are from their own city! This gives the students hope that they can also achieve their goals in life. Not only that, it shows them that there are different ways of being successful. One of the many reasons why Phoenix is a great city is because of its people. Artist, musicians, dancers, educators, and many innovators have made us proud.
What’s the future hold for PHX?
Phoenix has a bright future. Although some may hear negative comments about our city, if they were to come and see for themselves they would know why we love it so much; the food, the people, the sights, and much more.
I have had an opportunity to work with many educators here in Phoenix, and many of them are in education because they are passionate to make a difference in a child’s life. Support your schools and the people that work there! Find ways to volunteer and donate to your local schools.
Photographer: Alonso Parra
Model: Jesus Armenta & Students
Location: New World Educational Center 5818 N. 7th Street Phoenix, AZ

What’s your story?

My name is Jesus Armenta and I am currently a Principal of a K-12th grade Charter school called New World Educational Center located in the central corridor of Phoenix. I have been an educator since 1999 and have loved every minute of it! Throughout my academic career I have had many great role models that, in my mind, believed in me. These role models have helped mold my philosophy of education, which is, that everyone can achieve any goal as long as they believe in it. Also, I am grateful to my parents, family and friends because I have learned that work ethic contributes to anyone’s success.

My dedication to education has been to help everyone, but especially the kids that no one believes in. I have been given chances through out my life, and I believe that everyone deserves the same. My decision to become an educational leader came from knowing that I can help other teachers take ownership of the same philosophy I have. Our future needs us, and that is why I am here…to make them believe that they can succeed.

Where are you originally from and why PHX?

I was born and raised in Phoenix! Being a native Phoenician has its advantages; meeting people with drive in their life. Many successful friends and colleagues, who were also given chances, have come to the school to talk about their experiences to the students. What a great way to help our kids, giving them an opportunity to meet successful people that are from their own city! This gives the students hope that they can also achieve their goals in life. Not only that, it shows them that there are different ways of being successful. One of the many reasons why Phoenix is a great city is because of its people. Artist, musicians, dancers, educators, and many innovators have made us proud.

What’s the future hold for PHX?

Phoenix has a bright future. Although some may hear negative comments about our city, if they were to come and see for themselves they would know why we love it so much; the food, the people, the sights, and much more.

I have had an opportunity to work with many educators here in Phoenix, and many of them are in education because they are passionate to make a difference in a child’s life. Support your schools and the people that work there! Find ways to volunteer and donate to your local schools.

Photographer: Alonso Parra

Model: Jesus Armenta & Students

Location: New World Educational Center 5818 N. 7th Street Phoenix, AZ

What’s your story? 
I’m not the best at telling my story, but I was born and raised here in the valley and feel fortunate for it. 
My name’s Alex and I go by the name Djentrification and others, I used this name to force the word gentrification into print on fliers etc because we saw places getting taking away from development that had a great deal of cultural value to us here in PHX. This was around the year 2000 and we actually didn’t even know there was a word for it. I wanted to force the word out there more so that people would be more aware of it.
I began Dj’ing right before 2000 and have been interested in playing with sound since I was a young kid. It wasn’t a conscious decision to want to Dj, but came about more as an accident through trying to record tapes for myself, learning through coincidence and then mostly from our own neighborhood parties. We would put together a sketchy bunch of found speakers and amps, borrow a turntable from here or there and set shit up in the alley, a garage or wherever. 
It was really spontaneous and undocumented.
In a lot of ways this was really related with Graffiti people, I don’t know how to say it right exactly, there was a handful of us here in downtown Phoenix in the late Nineties and around 2000 just lurking and doing our thing. 
A lot of us had an awareness and respect for local history and people who had pushed and were pushing creativity around here since way back so we had a foundation in a way, on that note we also recognized collectives that had money and self promotion more as their focus and the effect and vibe they put off as well (most of these guys were based outta the east side and fell off since).
On the Graffiti tip, the parties and music were like the decompression side, the fun, easy (Easy as in fairly legal in comparison) side after painting, the painting was the real work. I don’t know how to say it or describe it. We weren’t taking photos and facebooking our scene on instagram or anything, at that point, even the idea of doing a party in a bar and for any money was even something that was not in our heart. We were just one tribe of hundreds of similar little groups that all had connection but space between them too in Phoenix. 
There were other groups around into all the directions holding it down for their neighborhood and we were related and at the same time isolated. A lot of people thought downtown was really dangerous then which was a kinda false perception. There were still mad drag queen on Roosevelt and so what? They had their culture and scene with 307 etc. and I myself respected their thing. Just because someone is smoking rocks doesn’t mean they are going come up and bite your neck or something. Lotta the street people were more trustworthy than the sketchy Loft-Developer-“Art” people that were to come downtown shortly after. 
Some (but not all) of the cats around at that time crucial to what was happening Downtown in this little micro scene: Andy Kelp, Pablo Luna, Space, Nathanial Nichols, FLip, Smite, Yeyo & Ekoe and a lot of other folks too.
I’m influenced a lot from the Phoenix culture I was brought up in. Local 80’s Skate and Punk culture,Graffiti writer culture,and underground warehouse parties of the late eighties and early nineties, then too, the Art & experimental scene of 80’s and 90’s inspired me and made growing up here interesting. People always move to the desert and see it as lifeless, but the real life is hiding everywhere beneath the surface and in the shadows.

Photographer: Hector Primero & Brenda Davis
Model: Djentrification
Location: Central & Buchanan St

What’s your story?

I’m not the best at telling my story, but I was born and raised here in the valley and feel fortunate for it.

My name’s Alex and I go by the name Djentrification and others, I used this name to force the word gentrification into print on fliers etc because we saw places getting taking away from development that had a great deal of cultural value to us here in PHX. This was around the year 2000 and we actually didn’t even know there was a word for it. I wanted to force the word out there more so that people would be more aware of it.

I began Dj’ing right before 2000 and have been interested in playing with sound since I was a young kid. It wasn’t a conscious decision to want to Dj, but came about more as an accident through trying to record tapes for myself, learning through coincidence and then mostly from our own neighborhood parties. We would put together a sketchy bunch of found speakers and amps, borrow a turntable from here or there and set shit up in the alley, a garage or wherever.

It was really spontaneous and undocumented.

In a lot of ways this was really related with Graffiti people, I don’t know how to say it right exactly, there was a handful of us here in downtown Phoenix in the late Nineties and around 2000 just lurking and doing our thing.

A lot of us had an awareness and respect for local history and people who had pushed and were pushing creativity around here since way back so we had a foundation in a way, on that note we also recognized collectives that had money and self promotion more as their focus and the effect and vibe they put off as well (most of these guys were based outta the east side and fell off since).

On the Graffiti tip, the parties and music were like the decompression side, the fun, easy (Easy as in fairly legal in comparison) side after painting, the painting was the real work. I don’t know how to say it or describe it. We weren’t taking photos and facebooking our scene on instagram or anything, at that point, even the idea of doing a party in a bar and for any money was even something that was not in our heart. We were just one tribe of hundreds of similar little groups that all had connection but space between them too in Phoenix.

There were other groups around into all the directions holding it down for their neighborhood and we were related and at the same time isolated. A lot of people thought downtown was really dangerous then which was a kinda false perception. There were still mad drag queen on Roosevelt and so what? They had their culture and scene with 307 etc. and I myself respected their thing. Just because someone is smoking rocks doesn’t mean they are going come up and bite your neck or something. Lotta the street people were more trustworthy than the sketchy Loft-Developer-“Art” people that were to come downtown shortly after.

Some (but not all) of the cats around at that time crucial to what was happening Downtown in this little micro scene: Andy Kelp, Pablo Luna, Space, Nathanial Nichols, FLip, Smite, Yeyo & Ekoe and a lot of other folks too.

I’m influenced a lot from the Phoenix culture I was brought up in. Local 80’s Skate and Punk culture,Graffiti writer culture,and underground warehouse parties of the late eighties and early nineties, then too, the Art & experimental scene of 80’s and 90’s inspired me and made growing up here interesting. People always move to the desert and see it as lifeless, but the real life is hiding everywhere beneath the surface and in the shadows.


Photographer: Hector Primero & Brenda Davis

Model: Djentrification

Location: Central & Buchanan St

image

PHX IS HOME and what a beautiful home it is…


image


What’s your story?

Who is Ruben Gonzales and what is 11th monk3y via The lab 137… 
Me Im a simple man with a complicated plan. I want to make a difference in this city hell in this world.  Some how, some way, and if it starts with just a simple tee shirt print then so be it.  :)

Im 33 yrs old, Im a bboy/dancer, welder, printer, fabricator, cyclist and designer, Im a man of many trades as some would say. I think with my hands and build with my brain, if that makes sense.

I run a small business that was born out of a back patio back in 2009, and that business is called 11th Monk3y. 

11th Monk3y: Is a shirt label, a print shop, and metal fabrications space. Its a dollar for dollar shop, built from the ground up from almost nothing other then a goal of becoming a sustainable small business. I help to house an open source workshop, printshop and workspace that allows you to well be you, be creative, and encourages you to do what you love. Its available to artist, hobbiest, creators. What we create via 11th Monk3y is custom apparel, art/design work, metal work, furnishing and art. 11th Monkey also does full multi-media printing (business cards, posters, banners stickers, etc.)  

Projects Im involved in have been helping out to do a full bar build our with Barry S. in the old Anti-space, as well as making a custom PHX bike rack for Pedal Craft.  Also involved in what’s to be formerly known as D.B.A.G. (Downtown Bicycling Action Group),  Also involved in 5th Row Dance studios as a co-owner and help to house Thursday Night Open bboy practices.    

Where are you originally from and why PHX?


Im a born Native via Luke Air Force Base, grew up in the streets and neighborhoods of Tolleson, Az for 20 yrs. Why Im in PHX now is because growing up in a small farm town as a kid I’ve always had that big city kid in me, with the exception that home wasn’t always that far away…  
As a kid we would take trips in to Downtown PHX and back then these were the tallest buildings I had ever seen. It was culture shock to say the least, especially when all your used to seeing is John Deer tractors and miles of corn fields and cotton fields and our big tower “The Mill” as I would call it. I grew up on with train tracks, corn, bean and cheese and farm land culture. As I got older I began to understand AZ had more in store for me, I started to get involved in Hip Hop & Rave scene (1994) and my world changed!

Warehouse parties, and street lights every where and more culture, mixed culture and a sense of freedom.  It was then that I fell in love with my city. Im now in PHX as a small business owner because at one point in my life I thought Az was supposed to be strip malls and Wal-Marts on every block…

Downtown PHX isnt quite that (yet) and I feel like as a young entrepreneur, now is the time to help our city grow properly with small business, mom and pop shops etc. This is our city lets keep it that way, lets live on a local level and love on a world wide one (thats the small farm town guy in me, lol).      


What’s the future hold for PHX?

Right now Im not sure, I feel like PHX has a chance, a really big chance to become something bigger then it even thought it was meant to be as a city I believe. I see PHX as a new leader in sustainability, energy renewal and the place to come to to begin your new business or dreams of hope (despite the summers).  This city has views like you cant believe, sunsets that are world wide renowned, and life outside the box. There is something special about this city, and for everyone it is different, so maybe step out side your door and discover what it is that brought you here…  Culture is all over in this city but its up to you to find it, make it an adventure go out and discover something new, you’ll be glad you did .  

I Love PHX indeed! 

Model: Ruben Gonzales


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What’s your story? 

My name is Monica Robles and im co-owner of The Lab and 5th Row Dance Studios

Where are you originally from and why PHX? 

I was born and raised in Somerton, Arizona a small town 10 miles from Yuma, AZ.  I attended the University of Arizona in Tucson, I studied graphic design, painting and photography and earned my BA in Graphic Arts in 2005. I decided to move to a bigger city and my next stop was Phoenix. I quickly fell in love with the downtown area I felt I had more of an opportunity for my artwork. I got my first art show at Paper Heart Gallery and from there I knew I wanted to stay in Phoenix and get to know what it was all about!

It was in early 2011 where I met Ruben Gonzalez and we started tossing ideas about what we wanted for the art community and how much we all needed a space to do our work.  We continued to talk about it for a few months and decided to take the leap and join in a business venture!

The Lab has open up my eyes too so many creative possibilities and has introduced to many talented artists. 

What’s the future hold for PHX?

As for the future I want to continue to expand what we already have going on at The Lab and 5th Row Dance Studios. I have enjoyed seeking out up and coming artist and giving them a chance to show their artwork. I want a bigger space so we can get artist to work together and share ideas and have a place where they can create. I think if we all stick together good things will continue to happen.

Model: Monica Robles

www.monica-robles.com



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What’s your story?

I’m Dave ‘Bully’ Bjorn. I am a partner in The Lab 137, a collaborative workspace and retail shop specializing in art & design experimentations. I also run Stomping Grounds, a furnishings and apparel line sourcing design from local tattooers, artists, graphic designers, and artisans; The Grounds products are sold exclusively through the Lab. I also run Bullpen Studios, a collaborative public art generator and home to the Burning Elephant project. I am a partner in Heart Factor designs, an industrial design house founded by Alexandra Campbell. Finally, I run Bjorn Consulting, a Service Design business that works with large companies to create and correct service delivery mechanisms to enhance internal and external perceptions of a brand.

Where are you originally from and why PHX?

I am a transplant from the Southeastern United States that has been in the valley for 15 years. I came here to create a living in the wide open spaces of the desert Southwest; and I found it, so I stayed.

Phoenix has a large number of creative and energetic people in it, with a low barrier to entry. Rents are comparatively low, complimentary services are easy to find, production or refinement of most raw materials can happen locally, and incomes are rising again. The largest job loss in recorded history has created a market of people who are exploring their personal skills and desires and finding ways to create their own “job”; one that sustains them both financially and in their individual growth as more than just “worker bees”.

What’s the future hold for PHX?

If we can keep the momentum of the past decade, the next 10 years will see a significant boom in independent business and individual prosperity. 

Model: Dave ‘Bully’ Bjorn
Stomping-Grounds-LLC
Bjorn Consulting


Photographer: Hector Primero & Brenda Davis

Models: Monica Robles, Dave “Bully” Bjorn and Ruben Gonzales

Location: The Lab 610 E. Roosevelt Unit 137, Phoenix, AZ

"PHX REPRESENT"
Speaking for myself I can never find a PHX T-Shirt I would want to wear!
Do they always have to look like the shirts you see in the airport gift shop, you know the standard cactus in the forefront, mountains in the background and Grand Canyon State emblazoned across it and lets not forget its printed on some tacky shirt color that wont match any of my sneakers!!! 
Fortunately i’ve walked into several galleries and boutiques downtown and found some GREAT PHX T-Shirts to rep the my city. 
The pic above was taken at “Palabra hair.art.collective” get a great haircut, check out some art and walk out wearing a PHX T-Shirt… cant beat that!
I’ve also spotted some other PHX T-Shirts at Sagrado, Nostra Style House, GreenHAUS, THINK Printing, The Lab, Culture Fresh and the Head Shop on 1st Street N of Roosevelt.
Also check out locally owned “Phoencian Urban” and “First-Twenty Sixth” online or on Facebook to snag one up.
If you know of any other places to find some PHX T-Shirts please let me know so I can add to this post!
Photographer: Hector Primero w/iPhone 4S
Location: 702 N. 7th Street Phoenix, AZ

"PHX REPRESENT"

Speaking for myself I can never find a PHX T-Shirt I would want to wear!

Do they always have to look like the shirts you see in the airport gift shop, you know the standard cactus in the forefront, mountains in the background and Grand Canyon State emblazoned across it and lets not forget its printed on some tacky shirt color that wont match any of my sneakers!!! 

Fortunately i’ve walked into several galleries and boutiques downtown and found some GREAT PHX T-Shirts to rep the my city. 

The pic above was taken at “Palabra hair.art.collective” get a great haircut, check out some art and walk out wearing a PHX T-Shirt… cant beat that!

I’ve also spotted some other PHX T-Shirts at Sagrado, Nostra Style House, GreenHAUS, THINK Printing, The Lab, Culture Fresh and the Head Shop on 1st Street N of Roosevelt.

Also check out locally owned “Phoencian Urban” and “First-Twenty Sixth” online or on Facebook to snag one up.

If you know of any other places to find some PHX T-Shirts please let me know so I can add to this post!

Photographer: Hector Primero w/iPhone 4S

Location: 702 N. 7th Street Phoenix, AZ