Founder & principal, city thinker, writer, arts & culture consultant, documentary filmmaker, curator, intoxicating agent
Laboratorio para la Ciudad, Tóxico Cultura, TED Fellows
Laboratorio para la Ciudad
02/12/2013 – 02/12/2019
Mexico City`s creative think-tank.
Project Website »
I have always been helplessly fascinated by the place where (so-called) fact and (so-called) fiction merge... by their volcanic and viscous borders, and by those moments when imagination helps mold reality. So it should come as no surprise that I decided from an early age that art and culture--in its myriad forms--would become my territory. Plus this place we call Mexico City, this (im)possible place, almost like an endless real fiction or story in itself. Because, with one of the most enigmatic, complex and fascinating cities in the whole world as playground, I now direct "Laboratorio para la Ciudad*, Mexico City`s new creative think-tank and experimental space: a place to think about all things city, and ponder social scripts and urban futures for the largest megalopolis on the American continent: from the outlandishly speculative to the surprisingly practical and everything in between. This project came about through a personal invitation by Dr. Miguel Angel Mancera--Mexico City`s newly elected and liberal Mayor--to incorporate "Laboratorio para la Ciudad" into the city`s official structure for the next 6 years. Laboratorio para la ciudad will support creativity and innovation through the different layers of both government and social-space, intermingled. Looking to imagine new urban (im)possibilities, further collaboration and discover provocative ways of both thinking and creating city, Laboratorio brings people together from different sectors and disciplines (urbanists, artists, scientists, architects, government officials, sociologists, economists et al). It also induces conversations throughout different platforms, invents and implements pilot programs, creates editorial projects plus other initiatives and strategies: all with the aim of injecting good ideas into the city`s system as well as provoking our inventive and future-ing brain muscles. And so, using many lessons from my experiences as a TED Senior Fellow, this new experimental space and multidisciplinary think-space places imagination at the center of community discourse, and searches for new solutions to social issues even as it satisfies creative impulses. Besides directing this city lab, I am a also a writer, visual artist, cultural curator; recently turned documentary filmmaker. I am a TED City 2.0 grant awardee, a Yale World Fellow, plus the founder of Tóxico Cultura: an award-wining cultural salon and arts incubator based in Mexico City.
Something I have never tasted before.
A funny story about me:
Being a TED Senior Fellow and then organizing a TEDx event altered the course of my life: turned my freewheeling self into a government official. Of sorts. Of very strange sorts. Like out of a Borges or Chesterton book.