In the midst of Cherry Creek Arts Festival’s first-ever ArtDenver, Denver-based fashion designer Mondo Guerra and Project Runway superstar is busier than ever. As the event’s creative consultant and one of the featured fashion designers, Mondo has spent months preparing for this indoor art event. Despite the fact that the show is only days away, Mondo had time for a phone call with Out Front correspondent Lauren Archuletta to talk about his upcoming trunk show, Under the Gunn mentees, and why there’s no such thing as “local Denver designers.”
Out Front: ArtDenver is something completely new for the Cherry Creek Arts Festival. How did you get involved with the event?
When I was first approached by ArtDenver, they told me they really wanted to add a fashion element, and I was then brought on as the event’s creative consultant.
What can we expect to see from you at ArtDenver?
Well I’m going to be showing opening night in the fashion show with Justin LeBlanc, Geoffrey Mac and Michael Costello on Friday night at the opening night party and fashion show, and then over the weekend I’ll be doing a trunk sale. What I can say right now is that my show is heavily influenced by my grandmother, really ‘70s with bright colors.
ArtDenver has en entire Colorado Makers section at this event, as well as having a lot of local designers. What are you most excited to see?
Well, first of all, people should never say “local Denver designers,” I think it’s degrading. They are Denver-based designers. This show is going to have a lot of Denver-based talent. But honestly, I’ve been so involved with everything that I’m doing that I haven’t been really “up” on what’s been going on in the scene. It’s just that right now I’m a one-man show. I’m doing all the cutting, sewing, and selling.
The trunk show is an interesting way of connecting with ArtDenver audiences. How do you see that going?
I think this is going to be a great experience for me. I’m excited to start working with my customers again. Now that I’m doing all the parts without help I can create the products my customers want.
You’re going to be showing with a lot of people you know. What’s the best part of this reunion for you?
Michael Costello has been making quite a splash since Project Runway, and he’s been working on some really wonderful things. And Sam Donovan was one of my mentees from Under the Gunn. This has been a lot of hard work but it will be a fun show. I would encourage all Out Front readers to buy a three-day pass so they can see the fashion designers and all the exhibits throughout the entirety of the weekend.
After ArtDenver, look for Mondo throughout the Denver area, interacting with customers in his Highlands studio or leading HIV/AIDS advocacy efforts.
ArtDenver kicks off at the Convention Center on Friday, Nov. 14, at 6 p.m. with the opening night celebration and fashion show. Visit www.art-denver.org for more information about the event or to purchase tickets.