Marc Ecko is the founder and chief creative officer of Marc Eckō Enterprises. He is also founder of Artists & Instigators. His talk was a mix of business, showmanship and his own concocted mathematical theory. Here are my notes from his talk.

  • Consider myself a designer, artist and instigator. I do P.T. Barnum s— every once in awhile.
  • My brand is a rhino.
  • Started painting t-shirts while at college in pharmacy school.
  • If Ralph Lauren can extend his brand to paint, why can’t I extend my brand?
  • Approach my platform as to what’s next.
  • The Ecko brand does $1.2 billion internationally.
  • Launched Complex magazine.
  • I have a Sweat Equity Education.
  • We need to reimagine vocational education.
  • Artists & instigators is new endeavor.
  • 80’s was about keeping it real. Jersey was diverse. I was obsessed with race since I was a white, Jewish kid living in a black area.
  • The tv cable truck arrived and it was like the future. 80’s were amazing and unique time.
  • I have perverted fascination with Alice in Wonderland. What am I? Liked narrative of Alice by challenging logic and truth. Who is Marc Ecko? Start to market myself. Became indulgent time.
  • I studied Alice in Wonderland. Had painting factory. Was a synthetic experience. Seeking authenticity by going down rabbit hole bit was unreal.
  • Authenticity. Ring theory. Looking at authenticity in words.
  • Can we define authenticity with math? Perception of connections is 360 degrees. Reality of inauthentic is less than that.
  • Numbers don’t lie. Don’t always tell truth either. Like a blivet. Perception. Reality. Blivet.
  • Unique voice. Must have one no matter what you do.
  • Unique Voice = (Action – Fear) / Self
  • No one is really selfless unless they are dead.
  • Two unique voices are Apple and Windows. Apple’s more self-serving personality has served their brand better because of it.
  • Fear. You can be fearless only when you are dead.
  • Action. You can be alive and inactive. Doing and talking are two different things.
  • Humans are emotional creatures. Pop-stalgia. Actions with emotional touch and feel.
  • is a campaign to ban paddling in all 50 states. When it first started, 20 states in America still allowed paddling.
  • Education system is messy. It’s a hyper local issue. Waiting for Superman? He’s taking a nap. We need some buckle up for safety s—.
  • Put up billboards in FL and LA highlighting Unlimited Justice.
  • 8 of 10 bottom performing states in America have paddling. Managed to flip New Mexico, so it no longer allows paddling. The legislation was in process, but Unlimited Justice helped push it along.
  • Not what you snap together but how you do it.
  • Artists & Instigators, not all about tech/code or “Ta-da!”
  • Feed people broccoli cake, mixing the right brain and the left brain. Like peanut butter and chocolate coming together.
  • We have 10% unemployment and 20% underemployment. We’ve had 10 years digital disruption now. Didn’t think about unintended consequences with that.
  • Trying to build AARP of pop culture.
  • Make your unintended consequences intended.
  • Nike’s motto is “Just do it.” Artists & Instigators motto is “Get it done.”*

*When I heard the motto for Artists & Instigators, I immediately thought of Larry The Cable Guy. I must not have been the only one who thought this because I heard other people chuckle when he said the phrase. One person even repeated it with Larry The Cable Guy’s accent.

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