Words by Eleni Papaioannou
Since 2007, when he launced www.yatzer.com, the ultimate online destination showcasing the best in the field of design, Costas has become one of the 100 most influential people in the industry. Big hearted, witty and with a brilliant sense of aesthetic direction, he is living proof that style is something that cannot be acquired. You even have it, or you don’t.
Is there still something that gives you the chills?
Yes, the depth of the internet. It has no end, it is chaos, the abyss.
What are your obsessions?
Good food, to share, chocolate and museums. A few days ago I had a seven-hour layover in Paris and I managed to tackle both the Louvre and the Pompidou!
Do you have any particular obsession on www.yatzer.com?
Yes, there is this Brazilian architect, Felipe Hess, that I find extraordinary. He is close to my age and he has so much to give. I have already told him that if I ever build my own home I want him to design it.
How do you choose the things you upload?
I get all these e-mails every day. But, I know exactly what I want to see on the website, I choose based on my instinct. It has never failed me.
How has your criteria changed through the years?
I have become more strict as the things I receive every day have grown tremendously in number. Moreover, the more the site’s traffic grows, the more responsible I feel about what I choose to present.
Have you ever been left without anything to post?
Never, never. Creation is a biological need, like food. There are so many things going on out there, there is always something new.
What is success?
It is so amazing to give someone the joy and pleasure to have shared their story with the world. This is what I love about what I do, you are certain you are going to make at least one person happy.
IT IS SO AMAZING TO GIVE SOMEONE THE JOY AND PLEASURE TO HAVE SHARED THEIR STORY WITH THE WORLD.
What nice words do you still carry with you?
There is this shoe designer, Andreia Chaves, whose work I showcased on yatzer. This basically kickstarted her career so the following year she presented her work during the Paris Fashion Week. She has sent me an amazing shoe prototype and a beautiful letter that is now framed and hanging on my wall.
Do you have any collections?
No, I only collect memories.
What do you like to shop?
Things for the house. Candles, perfumes…Not clothes.
What is your relationship with fashion?
I always wear the same outfit, like Albert Einstein (he laughs). I have a uniform, black shirt, black trousers, I don’t like thinking about what I am going to wear. I am a firm believer of the fact that one’s style is as loud as one’s voice. It speaks even when we don’t utter a word.
What do you consider ungraceful?
The Piano. Also, I love the documentary “Home” by Yann Arthus – Bertrand, about the earth.
What has defined you, aesthetically?
Love, certenly. And my travels, being in touch with different cultures and people. We are our luggage, the things that we carry. Their content is our story, the things that define both ourselves and our aesthetics.
What do you bring back from your trips?
Magazines. I love them, especially in-flight magazines. They are each a journey within a journey. You are high up on the clouds and you are already in a destination you are going to visit or you just dream about visiting.
Why did you decide to redesign yatzer.com?
I had gotten bored, technology had evolved, I believe that if you love something you want to nurture it, clean it up, pamper it. Yatzer.com needed a good cleaning. The last redesign had taken place in 2010 and so much had changed since. The latest redesign process lasted 12 months but it was so worth it…
I DO NOT HAVE ANY COLLECTIONS. I ONLY COLLECT MEMORIES.
And the results?
In the course of one single month our traffic has grown 60 per cent and the visit duration has spanned to three minutes, which means that our readers love going back and forth in our pages. It is very mind expanding, there is so much more to see and learn from, inspiring quotes, ideas, more traveling and, also, we have included the coordinates of the temple of Athena on the Acropolis, that for me is the epitome of beauty.
What is a typical day like?
I wake up, drink my coffee like everyone…I sometimes go through my mobile phone before I even get the chance to really open up my eyes. I go out, talk on Skype, go through my e-mails, do a little research on what is new. I do not follow political news, only news related to the world of design. For me working is my time off. Of course there are deadlines but I don’t mind.
Tell us about the Cycladic Art Museum.
I have been trusted with the curation of the museum’s art shop that is going to open its doors in October. It is such a fulfilling job, I really enjoy it. It is very much related to what I already do; however it is so much more tactile.
Do you get easily bored?
What do you expect from others?
What does the future hold?
My work for the museum, the city guides I am preparing for www.yatzer.com, starting from Athens and going on to present many other destinations around the world. Also, 15 October 2015 sees the launch of the exhibition #Instantane2015 that will be hosted in the Zoumboulakis Gallery until the 7th of November 2015. I take part in the exhibition with six of my images from instagram.
What are the icons that you trust?
Albert Einstein…because of my past as a physics student. Also Nikola Tesla, Le Corbusier, and Madonna as the ultimate iconic product. And, finally, Jesus Christ.