New York City-based street artist Futura (aka Leonard McGurr) was among the first to make his mark on the blossoming Wynwood Arts District. In 2009, Futura was called upon by the late Tony Goldman to tag the Wynwood Walls' main entrance—the sprawling work continues to be one of Futura's largest landscapes. Thus, it was only appropriate that when Futura returned to Miami to promote his latest project—a custom-designed bottle for Hennessy V.S.—that he did so at Wynwood Kitchen & Bar (WKB).
For the September 28th bottle launch, Hennessy and Futura hosted a VIP lunch and private party at WKB, as well as signings at two local liquor retailers. Hennessy will produce 200,000 of Futura’s bottles, which were a kismet collaboration: before the artist teamed with the liquor brand, WKB was already serving a “Futura” Hennessy Black-based cocktail.
"I was part of the first wave of guys who came down here to Wynwood. In Miami you had Primary Flight and other groups doing public murals, but it was Tony's influence, I think, [that took it further]—coming from New York, having a connection with the community up there, and bringing in a whole bunch of people for three years running," says Futura of Goldman’s influence on the arts evolution of the district.
On the upcoming Miami Beach Art Basel (which he’s not ready to reveal plans for just yet), Futura nods once more to Goldman’s influence: "Art Basel was always Art Basel, you know? The thought used to be, It’s wintertime, let's go away to Miami. But until Tony really did all this, it wasn't as interesting as it is now. He will be missed. He did a really great service for this community in terms of awareness. I see a future, I see people coming down here. I'd love to do another wall here. I'd love to do something more figurative. I have another universe of characters I'd like to create. That'd be fun."