Wednesday, 13 May 2009


Inspired by the recession and compelled to create something positive, Josef Valentino, Founder and Creative Director of Pollocks is launching ‘Worthless’, a live art installation that explores the value of material items in the heart of Seven Dials. For one week only (22nd–29th May) members of the public will be invited to bring their own ‘worthless’ items into the store and have them transformed into pieces of art.

With Worthless, Valentino intends to explore the concept that one man’s junk is another man’s treasure, challenging current perceptions of ‘worth’ and providing a service that will benefit artists and participants involved.

Says Valentino; “Worthless is a harsh, derogative word - but what exactly does it mean? The term applies as much to every day junk as it does to retail casualties of the current economic climate – none more dramatic than the recent demise of retail giant, Woolworths.”

The Worthless store event, Valentino’s first since Blank Canvas in July last year on Carnaby Street, will pay homage to the institution that was Woolworths, via ironic references throughout the installation space.

Valentino continues; “I don’t want to give too much away at this stage but the shop signage will be undeniably recognisable. On entering the store people will experience -

some very British institutional eccentricities. The aisles, the checkouts, a tanoy system, truly ‘helpful’ staff and shopping bags are all included!”

A team of Pollocks creatives will be working continually in the basement workshop on the transformations. The experience cumulates for participants when on collection of their item, the customer will be asked how much they now think the item is worth. This amount is what the customer will then pay for the item, and all proceeds will be split equally between Pollocks and the Artists. The pick of ‘worthless to priceless’ creations will be exhibited in the store from 1st – 5th June with several items being auctioned on behalf of the ‘MS Society’.

Valentino adds; “The exciting part is that we have really incredible talent lined up to participate in the transformation stages including some high profile Designers and Artists. This event will be an exciting example of how the negative outcomes of a recession can have positive impacts for other people/areas of society...”

Donna Lambert from Shaftesbury PLC, landlords of the Seven Dials area, “We are very excited about facilitating this great activity within Seven Dials, making use of this unit in an innovative way and also giving the consumer and visitor to Seven Dials another great experience”.

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