London’s Sarabande Foundation Takes What Now? Creative Careers Fair to New York for the First Time

CREATIVE CONNECTORS: The Sarabande Foundation is taking its careers fair on the road, staging the first New York edition of What Now? in May at The Standard, East Village.

The foundation, which was established by Lee Alexander McQueen and which provides studio space, scholarships and professional mentoring to designers, artists and other creatives, has booked a host of top brands to take part in the event, which takes place on May 7.

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Professionals from a host of American art colleges, and brands including LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton, Burberry, Thom Browne, Art & Commerce, Maria Cornejo, Gabriela Hearst and Khaite are set to take part in the event.

They will talk to recent graduates and anyone interested in embarking on a creative career, and attempt to answer the question nagging so many young people: “Where do I go from here?”

The room at The Standard will be divided into 22 stations where attendees can meet with people who have walked a similar path, get one-to-one practical advice, and listen to panel discussions.

The Earth Monsters show at Sarabande’s HQ in London’s Hackney.
The Earth Monsters show at Sarabande’s HQ in London’s Hackney.

Sarabande said last year’s event in London attracted more than 800 graduates of which 400 received one-to-one advice.

Trino Verkade, director of Sarabande, said that in a quickly changing creative landscape “it is impossible for a graduate to know where they will find fulfillment, personally and creatively.”

She added that the fair works both ways. While students are eager to evaluate their options, “businesses are desperate to hire graduates with new ideas and skills.”

The fair, she added, “is a great way of putting them together” and reveals a wider ecosystem full of opportunity. “The brands love it,” said Verkade.

What Now?, she added, is also in tune with the Sarabande approach, which is all about helping emerging creatives take charge of their careers, and urging them to work every day to further their ambitions.

The fair is not restricted to students or even recent graduates. Anyone interested in a creative career can sign up, she said.

On the evening of May 8, Sarabande will be hosting a fundraising dinner, also at The Standard, to benefit its myriad programs supporting creative talent.

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