Interview With Jiggy Rawal – A Modern-Day Treasure Hunter

Jiggy Rawal is a modern-day treasure hunter. But before images of Indiana Jones spring to mind, it should be said that Jiggy’s job involves sourcing the rarest, the most exclusive and frequently the most valuable collectibles in the world on behalf of her high net worth clients.

Londoner Jiggy – known as ‘The Curatist’, is on a mission to show us that wealth can be created in many ways and that an object of desire can not only bring pleasure and enjoyment, but also leave a lasting legacy for loved ones. Luxurious Magazine’s Sabi Phagura caught up with Jiggy to get an insight into her exciting career,

LM: Jiggy, you describe yourself as a Curatist. This is not a job description most people would recognise. Could you tell us what your work involves?
JR: If I asked you to close your eyes, go back to your childhood and early twenties, to think about the items you dreamed of owning, what would you say? What was it about the item that drew you to it? What memories did it bring back for you? Now did you get a small warm feeling for a moment? Did it put a brief small smile on your face? Well that’s what my business, The Curatist is all about creating those amazing memories whilst preserving wealth. I focus on building a story and creating an individual’s personal legacy through their purchase of collectibles that they are passionate about.

LM: Could you give some tips on how to start buying and investing in art and alternative investments?
JR: My recommendation for anyone looking to starting buying art or any other form of collectibles is ‘love it first’. The biggest mistake a person could make is to buy something in hope that it goes up in value. Art and alternative investments are about an individual’s passions first and foremost. They have to hold meaning and relevance to you as a person. Once you know what your passion is, then you’re ready to go exploring into the world. Research the marketplace to get to know and understand what’s happening within it. Review the cycles to see where it’s currently at. Read about the brand and understand the artist etc.

LM: What is it about alternative investments that have value over putting your money in bricks and mortar or on the stock market?
JR: The thing about buying ‘passion assets’ is that it’s just that, they are your passions. They are a reflection of you and tell a story about you. They have meaning to you and mark a moment in your life. So, you can look at them and enjoy them today. They tend to give you a tingle and make you smile. These items will remain generally long after you are gone but they will have significant stories and memories behind them. Value can’t be placed on these memories in the same monetary form as stocks and shares.

Cash investments such as bricks and mortar and shares will be disposed of over time to fund other activities and life requirements, however, these passion assets will be the last thing an individual would consider disposing of. Emotional enjoyment of owning and sharing beautiful items is just as important as its cash value. It acknowledges the importance of emotions, its history, invokes the senses and displays the story of a life well lived. Whilst with the stocks markets and property markets we pay focus to their prices, the thrill of driving and owning an iconic classic car or wearing a piece of history itself with a watch or jewellery, far outweighs the satisfaction of an increase in value.

LM: What makes a good investment collectible?
JR: Provenance, provenance, provenance. It’s all about provenance first and then brand name, which bestows credibility. Rarity is important too. The rarer the item, the greater its value so limited editions are ideal, but do check they are really limited editions in low numbers. The condition of the item and the more original it is, the higher the value. Is there a story behind the item? Then it’s very much dependent on the item itself. For example, with a watch, the movement is key. The market trend is also important. The Nautilus by Patek is a lovely watch but very much of the art deco time. It went out of fashion but as art deco jewellery came back in, the price rose tremendously.

LM: What makes you different to other curators?
JR: Traditional curators focus on one part of a person’s collection such as art. It’s all about building collections of substantial significance, stature and provenance. The Curatist is about focusing on the individual themselves, to begin with and then building a story about them through the use of collectibles.

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