Authenticity in creative businesses



Two weeks ago, just getting back from an attempt of writing the first 75 pages of my book, I spent a day at Roskilde University (RUC) conducting exams with 12 students that I’ve had the pleasure of mentoring through their group projects during the fall. Unfortunately group exams have been banned so even though there was only three projects we had to go through 12 individual exams. I would have loved to get further into the discussion of each project instead of starting over again and again – and I think the students feel the same way. 20 minutes of individual discussion just doesn’t give the same as an hour (or more) of participative group debate.

One of the projects was about authenticity in urban creative businesses, namely designers, artists, record-shops. The case was a small designer-shop in Vesterbro called CAN (check it out: where locals and connoiseurs of art and hip-hop records meet up for a social experience as well as bying art, records and one of a kind clothing. One of the points of the study by Rikke, Sander, Beate and Dennis was that a creative business can’t market themselves (or will not market themselves) if they don’t know what the codes of their authenticity is. As long as they don’t, they will feel that they sell out everytime they do actions to promote themselves and hence they will evade anything that resembles marketing. The way forward? “To know thyself”, as one philosopher said.

Artwork, courtesy of Stine and Martin at CAN, I’m happy to connect anyone to the students.