Tiziano Zorzan has worked with Sharon Stone, Whoopi Goldberg, Elizabeth Taylor and David Foster, amongst others. Often described as the guru of rebranding and marketing for companies, he has been a consultant for clients such as Cartier, Rolex, Tom Ford, Louis Vuitton, Piaget, Panerai and Lindt, covering different roles.
EDMcKee: In your opinion, what is luxury today?
TZ: Luxury has finally lost that bullying connotation: it is not about being able to pay an impressive subscription fee to get the best table Chez Les Club anymore; today it is more about being invited to that table because of your class and grace. Being a man, or a woman of Luxury these days means being persona grata.
EDMcKee: What is the opposite of luxury, then?
TZ: A fabric that is expensive but doesn’t last, a bag that is so fashionable you just want to throw it in the garbage at the end of the season, statements that are not bold because they are not authentic. Fake is the opposite of luxury.
EDMcKee: Style over substance? I.e. would you enjoy a restaurant with a fantastic buzz and sparkling atmosphere but mediocre food?
TZ: Well, I have found myself in plenty of those establishments. I aim to find the perfect combination of covetable quality and desire.
EDMcKee: What are the roots and the inspiration to your New York project?
TZ: It is not to be forgotten that this is Italy, the place where one can enjoy an unforgettable moment of Art and history simply joining the coffee break walk with colleagues. While this land and its features make it hard to convince ourselves as citizens that we indeed are like the others participating the European community, it also constitutes a natural barrier against the ugly and cheap. This is where an expedition to the supermarket is often a tour through significant monuments and you can happen to park your bike in the ‘Cradle of the Renaissance’: Luxury does not ever have a sinister connotation here, it’s more a natural consequence of things. Deciding to export it, to show it, is too a natural thought.
EDMcKee: Is the NYC project motivated to teach or enhance, or indeed both, to the international consumer?
TZ: My offering is not didactic. The mood of the world I am presenting is inclusive, and its objectives are pure. It is a business ultimately and not a vanity project. The art and the commerce must sit well together, therefore I am aiming for a broad appeal with uncompromised integrity within the product.
EDMcKee: You are described as an innovator in luxury consulting and a visionary in the industry. Within your expertise, what does your job actually entail and what makes your approach visionary?
TZ: That’s flattering. The truth is I go back to the intended future of a company, whichever product or service they provide my question is: how did you imagine this to be in fifty years? What is the dream that leads this company in a different dimension? Who is the heart of the whole crusade and can we walk a segment of the route together? My first weeks are crucial: we breathe, eat, drink the values and cycles of a company until we are back to the core.
We cut the useless, we define the dangerous, we underline and protect the core of it. Perhaps some direction has been lost, we just need to take the find and the righ path again. I provide solutions and nurture evolution.
EDMcKee: Who is your years of expertise have you encountered have you drawn inspiration from?
TZ: In every collaboration, be it a star or a builder, I draw something from the experience. Technique, craft and beauty often speak to my inspirations gained from others.
EDMcKee: Can the luxury world exist in a time of austerity? Or indeed do you think that it can flourish as a result of world financial woe?
TZ: Throughout history in tough times luxury has found new and evermore distinct definations. Society, in times of austerity needs an escape: the world of luxury often provides that dream.
EDMcKee: What humour can you find in the world of luxury?
TZ: When luxury and those who pursue it don’t take themselves too seriously whimsy and wit shine in the world.