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Open Collective

The Future Is Us Collective is transitioning to a new Fiscal Host

The Future Is Us Collective cannot receive contributions at the moment. This page will be updated with more information once the collective transitions to a new Fiscal Host.

The Future Is Us Collective

Futurist Youth-centered visual arts collective based in Philadelphia! 🪐

The Future Is Us Group Reside...
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Support the following initiatives from The Future Is Us Collective.

An arts and music festival centering creatives under 25 years old

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Residency where participants and facilitators engage in healing creative practices

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Digital arts festival presenting young Philadelphian creatives and their most recent productions

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The Future Is Us Collective is all of us

Our contributors 19

Thank you for supporting The Future Is Us Collective.

Independence ...

$25,000 USD

Stockton Rush...

$12,000 USD

Sam Merkt

$500 USD

Akili Davis

Saturnian Member

$330 USD

Samantha Connors

Mercurian Member

$220 USD


Transparent and open finances.

Balance transfer
Balance transfer
-$500.00 USD
Invoice #207167
Today’s balance

$20,057.84 USD

Total raised

$52,181.03 USD

Total disbursed

$32,123.19 USD

Estimated annual budget

$39,394.14 USD


Let’s get the ball rolling!

News from The Future Is Us Collective

Updates on our activities and progress.

The Future Is Us Collective presents the Limitless Voices Public Program !!

The Future Is Us Collective is happy to announce the “ Limitless Voices” public program. In collaboration with the Paul Robeson House and Museum, Limitless Voices is an after school workshop program where young visual artists will host thei...
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Published on January 8, 2024 by Laila Islam

Drag Show

This past March 25th, we hosted our first drag show event that celebrated the art of drag and invited young people to create, explore, and imagine through Drag at the Icebox Project Space. This event was a night full of performances, stunts...
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Published on May 16, 2023 by Semaj Johnson

The Future is Us 5th Anniversary 💗

On September 23rd we celebrated our 5th anniversary with an exhibition of 13 young Philadelphian artists! We concluded this exhibition with an artist talk. Check out our Youtube to stream the event:
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Published on October 5, 2022 by Laila Islam


Founded as a youth coalition of 8 artists in 2017,  The Future is Us Collective exists as an all-inclusive and youth-centered studio and gallery space based in Philadelphia. We are an arts-organization that creates artistic opportunities, spaces, and resources for teen and young-adult artists. Our organization curates and hosts free exhibitions, events, virtual programming, and workshops that are aimed to be fun, cathartic, and healing experiences for young people. 

These events and exhibitions provide free and inviting opportunities for young people to creatively express themselves, create art collaboratively in groups, and showcase and sell their artworks to their friends, family, and community. 

 As an organization we are organized and facilitated by young adults, serving with a "For Us By Us" model.

Our Collective Goals:

As a collective, we aspire to create resources where young aspiring and practicing artists can build a career foundation through our experiences and paid opportunities. We aim to bridge gaps of inequity for young Philadelphian BIPOC and queer creatives with experiences that serve as alternatives to academic institutions and white-centered gallery and museum spaces. In addition to creating resources, our goal is to create safe spaces where young people can build networks of support amongst peers, engage in community, and most importantly: have fun!

Our Values:

We lead our yearly projects and programming with values of: 

- We create spaces that empower young people to imagine, design, and create their own futures! Our programming, particularly our workshops and the Future is Us Group Residency project, are heavily inspired by Afro and Queer futurist philosophies.

🌟 FUN - We believe teens and young adults deserve harm-free spaces to engage in play and have fun! 

- Our founder, Laila Islam, defines Radical Healing as a practice where people create spaces for communities who experience systemic harm to think and exist outside of their violent histories and realities. These platforms allow groups of people to combat said realities, ultimately empowering and equipping people with the ability to better unionize and mobilize as communities through interpersonal care. We host programming and workshops where participants directly engage in healing artistic practices involving group meditation, open discussion, and more!

- We believe that it is crucial for communities who lack institutional support to have agency and their own spaces to create networks of support. Our events are spaces for young people to network, share skills, and make friends, while we provide showcasing and artmaking opportunities.

Our Projects

The Future Is Us Group Residency

The Future Is Us (TFIU) Group Residency is a pilot project where participants and facilitators engaged in somatic pedagogy and Utopic Imagining pedagogy as creative healing practices. A pedagogy developed by Laila Islam and Reva Rutherford, Utopic Imagining is a practice where one imagines, designs, and creates alter-realities that better serve Black and Brown communities. Utopic Imagining is an Afrofuturist method of speculating the past, present, and future, imagining a utopia, and designing technologies that support one’s envisioned utopia. Somatic (soma) pedagogy offers resistance to our violent capitalist environment by encouraging people to assess their bodily relationship with capitalism and how it manifests socially in our interpersonal relationships. Through therapeutic group practices, soma encourages deeper relationships with one's individual body as well as the collective body, ultimately embodying a healing state. Throughout this project, participants were encouraged to create a conscious relationship with their bodies, their communities, and their environment through speculative and imaginative practices. Exercises include group breathwork and writing, open discussions and presentations, collaging, and group art-making that is body-focused and play-centered. The findings generated by–and the works created from– TFIU Group Residency participants and facilitators resulted in a curated zine. This zine, Somatic Utoptic Imagining Vol. 1, is intended for use as a pedagogical tool, enabling readers to use our works as a reference for how communities can collectively process trauma, share knowledge, and create together through somatic pedagogy and Utopic Imagining. A virtual exhibition of the zine can be found on

Camp Future (2021)

Camp Future was a digital arts festival presenting young Philadelphian creatives and their most recent productions. This series of artist talks and virtual performances highlighted different forms of collaboration, processes, and conceptual focuses, all while connecting artists to audiences digitally.

The Digital Archive (2020)

The Digital Archive was an one-month online exhibition highlighting artists’ works from the enforced quarantine during the COVID-19 pandemic. For this exhibition we also interviewed artists on their relationships with the pandemic and their artistic practice.

The Film and Photo Show (1 & 2) (2018-2019)

We’ve hosted two pop up exhibitions catered to young photographers and videographers in our Film and Photo Show events. These events concluded with a screening of works by young Philadelphian filmmakers. 

The Install Pop-Up Exhibition Series (2017-2019)

Prior to the pandemic, The Future Is Us originally functioned as a series of pop up exhibitions that we documented as “Installations.”  We have hosted several Installations that invited young artists as young as 15 to showcase and sell their work for the evening. 

Our team