Questlove and the Balvenie have inked a multiyear alliance to explore the intersection of creativity and craftsmanship.
To mark the occasion, Questlove will host a new digital series called Quest for Craft, which focuses on “the pursuit of ultimate craftsmanship,” a statement describes. Series guests will discuss the craft, creativity, and what effects it. Quest for Craft is part of the Balvenie’s global campaign the Makers, an initiative that showcases craftsmen via content series, exhibits, auctions, experiential events, and an on-site creative residency program at the Balvenie Distillery.
“I have always been curious about what drives people creatively, and have used that curiosity in my own creative process,” Questlove said in a release. “From my youth touring with my parents, to my many conversations and collaborations with diverse creatives over the years, and writing a book on the subject, there are endless stories of creativity still to be discovered. I’m excited to take this journey with The Balvenie to tell these important stories of makers and their creative processes.”
Gearing up for the premiere of Quest for Craft, the Balvenie and Questlove will showcase the union of craft and creativity through original events, collaborations, and activations.
“I made my way to whiskey by passing through the culinary world actually,” Questlove said in an exclusive interview, when asked how the partnership came about. “I first got into food because I admired the creativity and process of chefs, and quickly learned that the culinary world is a close cousin of craft spirits. That was where I discovered, and was ultimately connected with, The Balvenie.”
He continued, “Making whiskey is a highly-creative process, and that led naturally to a partnership. I love that they’re a bit of an oddity who still use these very traditional processes, but have somehow remained on their own unique creative journey for 100-plus years. It’s meticulous and rooted in tradition, but at the same time very creative and exploratory, constantly evolving. It’s a parallel to how I view music in a way—grounded in theory but always experimenting. At the end of the day, I respect their process. It’s ‘passion for the process’ that’s at the heart of this partnership and that’s what we’ll explore in Quest for Craft.”
Questo also shared that drawing is the craft he’s currently perfecting. “Doodling and drawing is probably the number one craft that I immersed myself in over the course of this year. I have no illusions about what I’m doing. I draw not to see the final results but to move the pen around. Drawing is the one physical activity that I see as akin to chanting and meditating. You get into a state that opens a part of your mind.”