Learning to Evolve: A Manifesto of Reinvention

This is a Test "This is a Test" Photo Collage by Stephen Ruiz, 2013

Independent art is a tricky business. In my experience there are two types of artist that exist in this arena. There is the first kind who may have the talent, drive, desire and ambition to create something fresh and new, but without some form of financial support will give up. They either quit all togther, languish in obscurity, or worse. Then there is the other kind, for whom the creative process is so ingrained, that giving up is simply not an option. In the face of obstacles and responsibilities, with or without support, they continue to forge ahead. This group will create, grow, learn and ultimately push their art out into the world. Support be damned.

Bukowski worked at the post office for 17 years. Philip Glass worked as a plumber and cab driver. Henry Rollins, the punk rock icon, does voice-over work for Infiniti. Contextually what this means is that the creation and recognition of independent art, by this type of artist, will be manifested regardless of circumstances. It is, in it’s most primal form, the creative version of the “will to power.” These are our people.

2019 was a dormant year of reflection for Architects and Heroes. There were personnel changes, thoughts about direction and a feeling that the digital ecosystem in which we live had become a convoluted wasteland of sub-par content and intrusive tracking. We needed to take a break, to reassess where we were going. Where we landed after our hiatus is that we can no longer in good faith call ourselves a record label. We have become something that more closely resembles an art collective. Reporting, creating, observing, and critiquing creative work all integrated into a singular passion.

We want to expand the scope and diversity of our output beyond music. Design, literature, philosophy, art and cultural critique are all a part of this expansion. We want to raise the bar on our own consciousness, collaborate with other creatives, examine the zeitgeist and be a true independent content provider. From our headquarters in West Los Angeles, we want to shine a light on the creative endeavors that propel us forward.

Stephen Ruiz, founder Architects and Heroes