I was just talking with some friends the other day about how often celebrities get attacked by the media, but are never acknowledged when they use their societal position to give back to their local community. It came about over a discussion about Whole Foods Founder, John Mackey, who has obviously done well with the company, and no longer receives a (real) paycheck for his work at the company. He does however have plenty of other incomes from his role with the company, and for me personally, it seems the ‘I won’t get paid’ approach is a little too over-the-top in playing the role, no matter what person or organization it is.
I was pleasantly surprised to see that Pharrell, was getting some rare credit in a recent FastCoDesign article about his do-gooder plans. I’ve been a fan of Pharrell and The Neptunes since they worked on Rumpshaker and Blackstreet albums way back in the day. Their own albums were also easy choices for me to pick up when they finally got around to it in the late 90’s, plus anybody who has a skate ramp in their house, gets some sort of extra bonus points. It’s good to see Pharrell giving back to the kids in his community, and I really like the fact that he’s being creative with it, rather than letting a developer come in and make the same run-of-the-mill type of children’s center, that seems to fail in every city. Awesome to think of the possibilities of creating positive change, when you’re successful. Hopefully he can spread some of that positivity through his new role as Creative Director for KarmaloopTV.
I believe the architecture of a building says a lot about its soul and I wanted a building for the center that makes a statement to the world and the kids, something that will stand as a monument of optimism, and felt Chad was the only architect that could capture that. We want the building to look like something out of the future, so it will inspire the kids in it to aspire to greater things.