M. Carter Launches Storefront & Community Art Space
Back in January, the surf inspired brand M. Carter launched a Kickstarter to fund a brick and mortar retail location that will also serve as an art space. The current studio (141 Engert Ave) launched a soft-open this past Saturday. Expect loads of gear with beach vibes reminiscent of care-free Montauk afternoons, surfers, and 20th century culture.
With over $10k raised, there’s loads of goodies to look forward to in the new storefront. It’s a fantastic edition to Greenpoint’s sense of collective creativity. In the realm of new space and ventures, I chatted with Milton, the creative force behind M. Carter.
Milton: I grew up going to flea markets and yard sales with my mom in the 1980s. At that point you had the history of the 20th century being unloaded for cheap. For me, the Dreamland Drive-in Flea Market was a museum of art, culture and esoterica long before I knew about the concepts of fine art and design or had ever visited a “real” museum. Beach and nautical culture always had an allure because of the strong graphic imagery associated with the stuff of the ocean: rope, life savers, buoys, anchors, portholes, flags. Also, we would go to Topsail Island with my stepdad’s parents every summer; favorite pastimes included searching for sand dollars, shark teeth, spent fireworks, and driving around in our VW van with the sliding door OPEN (call social services).
Milton: The store will start small with a heavy focus on our merch (swim trunks, towels, tees, ballcaps, bags), along with vintage goods, and jewelry and what-not made by like-minded pals. We have plans to do small exhibits of our friends’ works on a designated “art wall” and will also have local artists do workshops for a nominal fee to get people together and make stuff.
Milton: We made these new palm pouches in three different sizes that I’m excited about.
Milton: When I moved to New York my girlfriend had a motorcycle that she had repaired at Tri-Borough Motorcycles on McGuinness. One day the owner mentioned he had a place for rent upstairs. That was almost 15 years ago.
Milton: I rarely take a day off but I guess it would involve doing some pop-bys at friends’ houses (it really throws them off!) and definitely some BBQing either on the grill bike out front of 141 Engert or in Matt’s (biz partner) backyard a few blocks away. Then bowling at the Gutter followed by a nightcap at Pit Stop bar (used to have a great karaoke night over there; once my brother brought the house down with “Baby Got Back” followed by “He Stopped Loving Her Today”).