Futura 2000 was born 1955 in New York and is an internationally acclaimed graffiti artist. He started to paint illegally on New York’s subways—the 1 and 3 lines—in the early 1970s, working with other artists such as ALI. Futura has stated: “My name just came to me one day, a combination of my favorite film, (2001 A SPACE ODYSSEY) by Stanley Kubrick, and the Futura typeface. Futura represented, obviously the future, and the 2000 was a projection of that thought.”
Philosophy and Style
He is known for pioneering abstract street art in the 1980s. Futura is also a successful graphic designer, illustrator, and gallery artist.
The artists cites the following “writers” as influences: SNAKE, CAT 87, STITCH I, COCO-144, EL MARKO 174, PHASE 2, FLINT.
Regarding the specific public location of his work, he has said:
“I was always at home in the subway system. Obviously so were a lot of others. It makes perfect sense that the subway system would literally become the ‘vehicle.’ It just happened, it invited it. Suddenly graffiti wasn’t limited to tenement halls, school yard walls, and bathroom stalls. Graffiti had found the speed at which it needed to be seen. To keep in step with the fast pace of communication and information sharing. What had started out as playing in subway tunnels had progressed into midnight forays deep in the interiors of the system.”
Futura 2000 is best known for his artistic involvement with the music and clothing industries. He is an illustrator and graphic designer of record sleeves; one of his projects included producing a sleeve for The Clash’s “Radio Clash 7” single and handwriting the sleeve notes and lyrics sheet for their LP Combat Rock. In the 1990s Futura met James Lavelle, which led the artist to produce artwork for several releases on Mo’ Wax Records.
Futura 2000 also works with GFS, Subware, Project Dragon, Recon, Nike, North Face, Medicom Toy, Undercover, Supreme, Levi’s, and A Bathing Ape in the artistic production of toys, sneakers, and a diverse range of creative media. He designs his own clothing label, Futura Laboratories, with a store located in Fukuoka, Japan.