MIKTOR AND MOLFNovember 1, 2013
Stroll the streets of Amsterdam and you’ll find there’s a lot that meets the eye. Bikes, canals, coffee shops, museums about cheese, museums about sex, and of course a certain well known district with a naughty red glow.
But look a little closer and you’ll find pockets of creativity dotted about these infamous lanes – and attached is an Amsterdam art scene just waiting to be explored. Through word of mouth we heard about collaboration artists Miktor and Molf – a duo well known for their obscure projects throughout the city.
We headed down to their studio to find out what they’re all about…
UO:Hey guys, tell us about when you started to collaborate…
MIK: We met in art school around 2003 and bonded through the fact we were the only guys skating in our class. So we started working on assignments together, making flyers, doodling on bits of paper and stuff. I quit school but Molf finished the course. We started up our collab again in 2007.
MOLF: We wanted to have a situation where half our work was our own projects, and the other half was paid work. But this never happens, it’s hard to make money if you’re not a well-known artist.
UO: Truth! So how would you describe your art?
MIK: We just like to make stuff you know, it doesn’t matter if it’s commissioned or not, we just come up with different concepts and ideas and go with it.
MOLF: We normally work with collages, but we’ve had a sculpture exhibition in Rotterdam too – we’ve also experimented with abstract paintings. We get bored really fast so we experiment with different terrains.
UO: What’s been your weirdest project so far?
MOLF: For one project we created some festival installations, they were these “chill zone” tents – the idea was you wouldn’t want to chill out in them. Inside there was a strobe light and smoke machine, so as soon as you stepped inside it was mayhem.
MIK: Funny thing is I kept getting messages from my friends actually inside them trying to hang out.
UO: We’ve seen that awesome illustrated skate pool in the NDSM Wharf. What’s that all about?
MIK: As skateboarders it was something we had dreamt about for a long time, so we found this big space where we figured we could get away with it illegally. We went around local skate brands to fund the project, but luckily this platform called AFK started a crowd source project and we managed to find some money.
MOLF: Yeah, we suddenly had more money than we could ever have dreamt of – it meant we could the project properly and the city supported us too. It’s really cool because there are some big skate competitions that happen over there – so Thrasher magazine film sessions inside our pool and we gets lots of exposure.
UO: What excites you about Amsterdam at the moment?
MIK: There are a few really fresh movements happening in the city right now. There’s this young gay scene called Knuckle Duster Agency and they put on these really eccentric parties. It has this really fresh energy and I think it’s really going somewhere.
MOLF: Since Red light Radio has been here there’s this new place for music too. Those guys give everyone time on their show; it’s been really healthy for the Amsterdam music scene. For a while it was all dusty and old, but bands have started to play in the city again, and there are cool people here to see it.
MIK: There are a lot of changes happening in Amsterdam at the moment, especially in the north. It used to full of squatters but now it’s full of artists and other creative people.
UO: What’s next for you guys?
MOLF: Actually, at this point right now, we’re thinking of quitting!
MIK: Yeah we’re going solo!
UO: But why?!
MOLF: We’ve been doing this together for six years now. At first we used to be really surprised by each other in how we worked with ideas – it all was very schizophrenic. But we’ve isolated ourselves and by working together so much, we need to find a new energy.
MIK: It’s like a marriage; you need space now and again. We’re both excited about what we can do by ourselves. We’re so used to finishing each other’s art when we work on projects. It will be interesting when we have to finish it by ourselves.
Now check out the images we shot on the streets of Amsterdam – click them to shop our winter look-book.