photo: @olya_o for @zeitmagazin, overlay: @boju

Let’s talk about VALUE.

My professional path is guided by a deep curiosity for the production and circulation of VALUE. I look at value in all its different forms: from financial to social, cultural, and ecological. My focus is to create value for brands and products in an innovative, sustainable, and regenerative way.

In the past, value was mostly tied to how products were made, to the actual material value of the object and its scarcity or demand. These days, value is mainly connected to information; to knowledge and personas. Consumers want to know who created the goods they buy, as well as how and why. They understand the cultural relevance of items, in all its nuance and complexity, and they follow the work of designers. This knowledge is communicated in the things they wear, the brands they like, and the designers they endorse.

So, in 2022, luxury items communicate the status and wealth of their owners not so much by virtue of their material qualities, or the skilled labor invested in them, but through the cultural codes and references they possess; the totality of semiotic gestures we call STYLE. Along these lines, coolness, street cred or edgyness are dimensions of perceived value.

“Cultural knowledge and access are now as valuable as a a seven-figure bank account. On a surface level, it’s easy to read this in the $ billion valuations for labels like Supreme and resale platforms like StockX. But it takes an understanding of street culture as a perspective—not an industry—to see the truly valuable implications beyond clothing and footwear.”

(Brian Trunzo, “The New Luxury”, p.10)

The old view of branding was that you can brand or market anything, and create immense perceived value while effectively selling lies. Branding remains a practice of building upon the existing value of the product. I am interested in providing actual, lasting value. Not the hollow, fleeting kind.

In my practice, I am looking for products, brands, and companies that have intrinsic value. My added value (my +) is to increase their perceived value in a sustainable, regenerative way. Not by extracting cultural codes and merely appropriating them, not by telling stories without validity, but by building lasting partnerships and mutually beneficial collaborations, and by facilitating continuous, organic GROWTH.

photo: @olya_o, overlay: “tackling the crisis of value extraction” @boju