FriendsWithYou is the creative love child of Miami-based artists Samuel Borkson and Arturo Sandoval III. Created in 2002, FriendsWithYou was founded on the basis of one clear mission; to spread magic, luck and friendship around the world through their characters and dream-like landscapes.
How did FriendsWithYou begin?
It began as a means to spread our art concept to the world without it seeming elite or unattainable. So we made a series of toys called ‘friends’ and began sharing them with the world one friend at a time. We wanted each one of the FriendsWithYou projects to be a fully immersive idea from our products to our large events and once in a lifetime experiences.
What is the philosophy behind FriendsWithYou?
It is simple. We offer a modern tool for spirituality that we find lacking in society today. It is not dogmatic or religious, but simple, in that we believe that all people have great power and if they can see through the roadblocks and alter their perception, they can make magic happen. We also view it as the great connection, that once humans are all on the same page we will make something great together.
What are your sources of inspiration?
We are inspired by so much, from simple life things to comics, art, friendship and a lot more.
I feel we draw a lot of inspiration purely from how we look at the world and process it.
What role does Miami play in your work?
Miami is a very special place in its vibrations and its whimsical underbelly that often goes unnoticed. The people are warm, the beach is incredible, and there is some kind of magic to this place. It is a city that is very different from the rest of the US
What makes FWY installations so special?
FriendsWithYou’s approach to fine art has always been to give people an incredible experience that is completely immersive and caters to all senses. We feel art needs to make a change in its audience and be very impactful. It needs to be awe inspiring and aspirational in every sense of the word. We want to impact your life and open the doors of your perception so that you can enter the unknown in a safe and accessible environment and you have the power to play and imagine even more from that moment forward.
What is FWYstudios?
FWYstudios is the dream boutique headed by Sam Borkson and Arturo (Tury) Sandoval, where we create all the magical properties and intellectual properties for our own brands as well as the most popular brands in the world. FWYstudios is the breeding ground for everything from fine art and events, to directorial projects and commercial branding and strategizing.
Who are some brands that have enlisted the magical services of FWYstudios?
FWY Studios has been sought after to develop the image and identity of some of the world’s most prominent brands, such as Nike, MTV, Red Bull, Target, Gwen Stefani’s Harajuku Lovers and Coca-Cola.
I believe FriendsWithYou plays a part in the N*E*R*D film clip Hot & Fun. Tell me about this amazing collaboration…
N*E*R*D needed a tripped-out masterpiece to be wrapped around a Rolls Royce for their new video, Hot & Fun.
When asked to create a piece in the vein of the Yellow Submarine/John Lennon’s classic 1960 Rolls, things got exciting!
In turn Magical Explosions was born, a psychedelic take over of FriendsWithYou cosmic forces. The video was shot Mad Max style in the desert of California and from what we’ve seen, the car fit the part perfectly!
3930 NE 2nd Ave
Miami, FL 33137
This interview first appear in #21 the FRIENDS issue. You can purchase it here.