US brand PRMTVO (pronounced pri-mi-tivo) are newcomers but have already been stocked in Europe and Australia, with their recent Stone(d) Age collection currently available at stores such as Donuts, Wood Wood and Doomsday. Brands like PRMVTO are continuing the DIY aesthetic and free thinking attitude which skateboarding brands from the ’90s started. Communicating and presenting ideas to an audience is vital for any brand and few do it right, but PRMVTO are making full use of social media outlets such as Instagram and Vimeo in a way that’s engaging and interesting. The Stone(d) Age collection is a pretty obvious exploration in to the world of psychedelics. Not for everyone of course, but there’s no harm whatsoever having an open and inquisitive mind. Whatever means you use to get to that point, it’s a way of life that has always gone hand in hand with ‘street wear’ and sub-cultures. We had a chat with Christian and Oscar, owners of the brand, to get more of an insight into PRMTVO and what makes them tick. Keep an eye out, we think they’re ones to watch in 2014.
Give us a rundown of PRMVTO. Who is PRMTVO, where are you guys from and how long have you been doing the brand?
Christian: PRMTVO is Oscar & myself (Christian) and we are from Planet Earth.
Oscar: PRMTVO was a long time in the making! We met long ago, and have undergone tons of aliases and transformations but we birthed PRMTVO early in the year of 2013.
What’s the reason for calling the brand PRMTVO?
C: PRMTVO is an acronym for primitivo; meaning primitive in spanish. We are both latin-american and wanted to represent our cultural backgrounds with a spanish name. As for the thought behind the name, to me things always feel better when in their raw & primitive states. We’re inspired by culture, art, spirituality all deriving from those pure senses that drive us to do something primal. So much of our ideas get tainted by things and people around us that make us second guess ourselves, and with PRMTVO we wanted to remind ourselves to keep things simple and fun! The reason we reference drugs and psychedelics is I believe they help us bust down those barriers and open our perception to be more in tune with the universe and ourselves. #COSMICMUMBOJUMBO
O: And they’re fun too!
Your most recent Stone(d) Age collection feels like a tripped out representation of youth attitude. That nostalgic, psychedelic, space age and lo-fi aesthetic can come from a variety of inspirational sources. What continues to influence what you do?
C: I’m inspired by people who choose to live by the beat of their own drum. Freaks, weirdos, hippies, punks…anything ANTI inspires me.
O: I’m inspired by unearthed treasures in magazines, comics, books, movies, etc. My surroundings play a big part also… LA streets are full of energy and inspiration!
Music can be a big source of inspiration. What’s on your playlist lately?
C: Music is a huge factor for me, I almost always need to have something on to get the juices flowin’! Right now i’m into anything with a little bounce! Been listening to lots of Clinic (full discography), Arthur Russell/LOOSE JOINTS (Is it all over my face?!?!), LiquidLiquid, Dots & Loops, The Telescopes, and ANYTHING Spacemen3 ANYTIME.
O: On heavy rotation for me right now are; Chi Ali, El Michel Affairs, Illya Kuryaki & the Valderramas, Takako Minekawa, Big Pun, The Beatnuts and Spacemen 3!!!
It feels like the brand combines elements found in an LA lifestyle like excess, boldness and vibrancy while incorporating sub-cultural influences. How does that environment and lifestyle effect the brand’s ideas and direction?
C: I think being in a LA we’re surrounded with so much imagery that we are constantly absorbing so many different cultures, art, food, etc. Our brains are injected with tons of inspiration on a daily basis. It’s easy to be inspired, just have to be open & receptive to it!
O: What he said!
The re-appropriation of cultural elements has always been fundamental for brands. Is there a message or essence that you aim to communicate through PRMTVO?
C: Message? Nah, leave that to your parents!!!
O: Not a message as much as a clue for younger generations to pick up on! Our Stone(d) Age collection had major nods to people that have greatly inspired us such as Crumb, Axelrod, Anger, Spacemen and more. Hopefullly the imagery will inspire kids to do some diggin’ and research to find out more about creative geniuses who layed it down waaay before all the contemporary artists they are seeing today. Oh, and keep it weird and fun!
You’re already stocked amongst your contemporaries at stores such as Wood Wood, Doomsday and Donuts. What can we expect next from PRMVTO?
C: Still can’t believe the whole W.W. thing BTW. They have always been a major source of inspiration, so when we actually got a reply from them we were In Utero (Nirvana!). I’m humbled to work with artist that we’ve loved for so long and thankful to all our shops. They took a chance on us, and we really appreciate them.
O: People keep asking us when we’ll have new shit?!? As of now, we’ve decided we aren’t gonna play the S/S & F/W season game. We really want to continue making stuff we dig, but don’t want to race to have to put stuff together every season and end up putting out crap. We just want to continue working with artists/brands on cool projects and make more than just clothing!
C: Uh-huh Oscar! We do have a cool new project dropping next month or so…so stay tooned!
Anything else you want to add?