“My philosophy is: if you don’t bear a cross, you can’t wear a crown so you gotta go through some form of humiliation to reach tribulation.” – Peter Tosh
A brand to me is a company or group thats soul purpose is to build an empire that’ll take over the world – metaphorically speaking. Its deliverance through forms of images, music, poetry, etcetera. I had the opportunity to interview a brand/collective named Studio27. Comprised of just two unique, reserved individuals Ty Mogaji, 26 and Klowon, 22 this company somehow manages to thrive and work hard to maintain its integrity. And they embody everything a brand should be.
“I know we’re making it kind of hard for you to do this article but I’m like private as hell.” – Klowon
Klowon, of Liberian and Lebanese descent resides in Providence, Rhode Island. Conversing with him individually felt natural. The vibes were light, the positive energy was strong and chill. Klowon is quiet and hushed. A man of very few words but in the same breath he knows when to speak up; blunt persona..my personal favorite when it comes to building new kinships.
His friend Ty Mogaji, born in Providence, RI as well as Klowon has endured “[a] share of trouble but nothing too serious” and came into the picture to solve the mystery as to who Studio27 is.
RESPECT.: Who exactly are you? Be as specific as you can
Ty: What’s up man my name is Ty, I’m from Providence, RI and I’m co-creative director behind Studio27.
RESPECT.: Who came up with the name? How did it originate?
Ty: It was collectively branded. We were called 27 Club to embrace the artists that have passed a the age of 27 but thought that was too cliche and that’s what we started as, somewhat as a platform for us to express ourselves, and over time it turned into what we are now. Which is a design based consulting agency.
Consulting agency? Hm, that’s a different approach to a brand/company nowadays because not many want to switch it up and make it real. Today, most brands are cooking cutter houses meaning that everything pretty much looks the same, built the same, and so on. Studio27 on the other hand is isolated. In a good way of course. Isolation when it comes to the artistic world allows for the creative to build new concepts and deliver a newly invented piece that leaves its audience in awe and interested as to what is next.
“I keep sailing on in this middle passage. I am sailing into the wind and the dark. But I am doing my best to keep my boat steady and my sails full.” – Arthur Ashe
RESPECT.: Most important asset that your brand brings to modern culture. What does it contribute besides the attention of whoever is watching
Ty: We’re very in tune and aware with what goes on around us so we come up with these monthly zines that’ll shed light on subjects that would make most people feel uncomfortable talking about or they themselves are not aware of.
“We don’t want to be preachy but we do want to educate people through our art. In time, we’d like to get our zines published so people could have a physical copy of our work.” – Ty Mogaji
RESPECT.: What are your plans for furthering this company?
Ty: Right now, we handle art direction and branding for artists under the collective such as Boy, Nfromthewave, Norri and Rayne. We showcase our work through them. We do have some branding and consulting projects that are in the works with outside entities too.
Networking and establishing relationships within the artistic world helps further progress an individual or group’s success rate and recognition. Both success and recognition are two things that many creatives today seek and will do anything to meet that certain status: a status of “royalty” and the feeling of being on “top.” Studio27 strives for nothing of the sorts. Their role in culture helps bring everyday issues to the forefront through mediums such as art and graphics; this way adolescents don’t have to get bored by reading news articles, politics, think pieces, etc.
“Everyone’s trying to reach the top. Tell me how far is it from the bottom.” – Peter Tosh
Mogaji hints to us that there will be, “a zine coming out in May and [they’ll] have some pieces that [will] be selling soon.” When asked who they would like to give a shoutout to Mogaji replied with, “My whole team man. We’re more like a family and we’ve grown in so many ways possible. Glad that I’m sharing this experience with them. S/o to the city and everyone working.”
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