by Jeremy Brautman

This month, Castro's own design-collective-slash-toy-store, Neon Monster, traveled to Miami to take part in the multi-brand, limited edition environment, F-Factory for Art Basel. With their toy-filled Cave of Wonders, they might at first have seemed like the oddball invitee to the curated project, but a closer look shows the Art Basel 2009 newcomer fitting in quite nicely. Juxtaposing customizable art multiples and glossy, clean graphics, Neon Monster formed a seamless bridge between the high-end DIY handbags of ground floor anchor, Fendi and the hip, print-on-demand shirts of neighbors to the north, Surropa. As co-founder Kristy Klinck put it: "The modern collector wants fun, functional and engaging objects, items that both inspire and reward the owner. We used this opportunity to produce limited edition art forms that create emotional, tactile and surreal visual experiences."