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DIY turns into Do It Together; do it yourself venue GNU turns to The Venus Project

venus_project_logo_by_unknown_cowfish-d2u2v53 (Photo credit: SpiritualPeopleForRBE)

While some are fretting about the world ending, others are fretting about the unsure future that awaits us when it doesn’t.

A documentary called “Paradise or Oblivion,” made by The Venus Project, will be shown at GNU: Experience Gallery Tuesday night at 7:30 p.m., which will introduce the attendees to the progressive ideas of Jacque Fresco.


The Venus Project is a movement that was started by a French structural engineer, industrial designer and futurist Fresco. The movement is based on a future that doesn’t focus on a monetary-based economy but a resource-based economy.

“We’re not just about art and music. Ultimately, as a theme underlying most of the efforts we put into life, [we] are philosophically what you might call Utopians,” said Brandton Manshel, co-owner of GNU. “We think that everyone should be exposed to the VP ideas for the betterment of humanity, and those ideas should be put into action as soon as possible.”

Tomas Herrera, also co-owner of GNU, sees the gallery as a community group and wants to reach out to said community about different ideas.

“I think being able to open up a dialogue and … look at different models of existence (we could find) a more effective way of interacting with each other,” Herrera said.

Being a DIY (do it yourself) venue, a product of a culture that inspires a more personal and self-sufficient approach, Marshall sees the importance of expanding the typical music and art that is displayed by a more socially aware entity.

“DIY is not limited to music or art or crafts or whatever. DIY is a response to general aggression from higher powers that are abusing us,” Manshel said. “Our role, whether DIY spaces realize they are doing it or not, is to provide communities a mirror to reflect possible avenues for larger scale positive change. We’re like little laboratories for societal imagination.”

Connecting back to the Venus Project, the movement can be seen as DIY charged as well.

“The Venus Project is DIY too. Nobody else is doing what they do. Thus, they do it themselves,” Manshel said.

The documentary claims that is solves the global debt problem in 48 minutes, a large feat to claim. However, Manshel said that the movie is hard to argue with.


“I feel a mixture of hope for the future, and nagging irritation that we haven’t done what they suggest already when I watch it,” Manshel said.

Local musician, WhiteCatPink is planning on making an appearance at the screening because he believes GNU always has a cutting edge line up.

“Coming from Saturn and seeing the human race in near total disarray and separation, taking a more worldly view of what is going on will help humans to realize the necessity of banding together. Chaos only breeds more of the same,” WhiteCatPink said.

Chris Westin, with Rhinoceropolis, a Denver DIY venue, saw the documentary and has made life changes because of it.

“I saw the world much differently after spending sometime with the movement. It’s definitely forced me to look in the mirror and ask myself how I could help make the world transition into a more sustainable system,” Westin said.

When it comes to the DIY scene however, Westin disagrees that it is personally concerned with sustainability.

“(I’m) not saying that there aren’t any groups or ‘scenes’ concerned, or even working towards goals similar to the Venus Project, the Music and Arts community seems split on ‘important’ issues, either split politically or just plain apathetic,” Westin said.

Herrera pointed out that perhaps the next step in preparing for the future is to work as a group rather than by oneself.

“I guess the DIY culture feels and recognizes that you have to change and take some personal responsibility for what you want in life, and just get (stuff) done,” Herrera said. “We’re not really interested in DIY but into ‘DIT’ — Do It Together.”

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