It all started when I saw a new logo pop up in my newsfeed one day. It looked sort of British, like the Underground tube sign, but the name I had to say out loud – just to see if I could say it properly phonetically.
Derinkuyu. Darin-kooyoo? Assuming I had the pronunciation right I clicked on the page which called itself an Arts Community. Much to my pleasure I realized it was local. At first I recognized the photographs taken by local photographer John Mitchell. Anyone in the scene in Toronto knows who this guy is. It’s like he is THE photographer and the best shows getting the best shots of huge artists. He also loves his cats excessively – if social media serves me correctly. Personally, I’ve never met John. I followed his photography and his saucy Instagram until one of us added the other on Facebook. Still wouldn’t recognize him in a crowd but would know the Derinkuyu logo in a second.
From one artist to the next you can always see when someone takes pride in their work and spends that little extra attention to detail. I’d known this about John and his work and now I saw him making massive almost shellacked wall hangings of (I do not use this term lightly) ‘epic’ moments in club nights gone by. Wall hangings then progressed to tables. The brand has now grown to incorporate sound wave designs to cement a special track or audio file as artwork for the home. That was the last straw. I had to stop simply liking his Insta and reach out to John Mitchell personally to see what his motivation is. Within a few lines of banter, I learned Derinkuyu was a bit Transformer-esque in the sense it was ‘more than meets the eye’. John has a partner, Tommy Berket. They also run a music label under the same name. They’re engaging the Toronto community by giving them a platform to house their art… Hence being called an Arts Community. It was all making sense. Bravely, I asked John for a bit of time and he warmly accepted the invitation to talk to Decoded Magazine North America even though I thought I might get one of his infamous memes as a response.
Read the interview I did with John Mitchell here: