Cover art for podcast The Institute of Black Imagination.

The Institute of Black Imagination.

34 EpisodesProduced by darioWebsite

Welcome to The Institute of Black Imagination hosted by artist, writer, and brand consultant Dario Calmese. Each week we bring you conversations from The Pool of Black Genius: a collection of iconoclasts at the leading edge of cultural thought and innovation. More than anything, we are here to inspi… read more


E9. The Business of Creativity w. Jey Van-Sharp and Kwasi Gyasi.

Today’s episode is with management consultants and two of the three founders of MyUberLife, Jey Van Sharp and Kwasi Gyasi. With combined degrees in electrical engineering, physics, math, and business, these two men developed keen senses for dimensionality and the need to impact the cultural spaces around them. “Through conversations, people were always amazed by how smart we were, part of it was because of the pigment in our skin” (16:05). While seeing a gap between the creativity of business and the business of creativity, their consultancy, MyUberLife was formed. “Let’s create this company called MyUberLife so it would be almost a self-manifestation like I want my life to be super so lets create a company and teach business to creative people and it was that simple (18:53).

Jey and Kwasi created an ecosystem of intellectuals by inadvertently becoming the middle man between cultural intelligence and business intelligence. “What we do is teach creative people business; as we found out to do that really well we also have to deal with the money and teach the money how to deal with creatives so we start teaching corporations culture and that community. So we start doing two things, one part teaching creative people about business and the other part teaching business people about creatives” (19:16)  MyUberLife’s method always starts with the Why. “The first thing we do when we start out is tell artists to write their manifesto out. I don’t care about what you do, tell me why you’re doing it.” (22:12). Afterwhich, they approach with practicality: what is your story? How much does it cost to make these goals a reality? “Then you start understanding, ‘How much does it cost to do my practice?’ My rent, my studio, my equipment, my paint brushes. A lot of people don’t understand how much it costs to be an artist.” (23:30).  How do we generate revenue around your creative endeavors? “We have a rule of thumb we say you need to make 3x the amount of money that it actually cost you to do something” (23:52).

During this episode, we discuss the formula for creating impact in the world, “Creativity times organization equals impact (25:06), the importance of owning your ideas (24:36), understanding the value of your individual story, “everywhere you go is your ideology and your ethos representative in that moment and time, in that space” (29:57)  and how to communicate that to consumers, “Marketing is communicating your value through someone else. Marketing is also understanding what someone else values” (24:18).  Recorded before quarantine, this informative conversation will cause you to pull out your notebook and get organized about your creative pursuits. It is with great pleasure to introduce Jey Van-Sharp and Kwasi Gyasi to the IBI podcast.

Links we mention in the episode:

Jey's Instagram: @jeyofmyuberlife
Kwasi's Instagram: @kwasiofmyuberlife

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Additional editorial content provided by Kalimah Small.

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