Building off of his extensive experience across the fields of design, art, architecture, and technology, Perlin will be a welcome addition to HUSH’s strategic, human-centered approach to experience design. By further integrating design strategy as a core component of its offerings, he will help strengthen and expand the firm’s position as a leading experience design studio. Collaborating closely with a wide range of brands and organizations who value architecture, design, art and technology and culture, he will be working hand in hand with HUSH’s strategy, technology, design and production teams to help articulate each client’s needs, and build meaningful experiences that realize their goals. Strategic thinking has a particular urgency during challenging times, and by working together and identifying key insights and opportunities for impact, Perlin will be collaborating with HUSH’s teams to build dynamic experiences for humans to better relate, communicate and experience each other and the worlds around them.
“Strategy to me is really just being aware of oneself, others and the world,” explains Perlin. “I believe there’s a real business value to listening closely — that is, paying attention: first to myself, then others, and then to the data and the world. For brands, it really begins with asking not just ‘what do I personally want or need,’ but ‘what do people want and need? How can we better listen to them to help their lives?”
Before joining HUSH, Perlin served as the Experience Director for both Local Projects and Droga5 as well as the Strategy Director for Imprint Projects. He is the founder of perlin studios and his own design agency, Make_Good_Design, dedicated to creating experiences that address critical issues surrounding humanity and the planet. Perlin is also an adjunct professor and has taught at New York University, the Rhode Island School of Design, and Columbia University Graduate School of Architecture and Planning.
“I’ve been a fan of HUSH for a long time,” he continues. “I was struck by their commitment and high quality of work that seamlessly flows between art, design, architecture, and new technologies. I can’t wait to listen and work with this amazing team — to grow, build, and develop our strategic visions together. It is the kind of experience journey I really love.”
Lauded for his creative intuition at Local Projects, he helped create the interactive redesign of the Cooper Hewitt Museum in New York, winning a National Design Award for Best Interaction Design. Most recently, his “I Will What I Want” campaign with Droga5 for Under Armour garnered a Cannes Cyber Grand Prix, a Clio Award, and a D&AD Award. In addition, Perlin and his teams have won several Webbys, FWAs, and Awwwards for projects including “Look Up,” an interactive wall installation for Smartwater, Android’s “Leap Second,” and “Harmony Mastered From Chaos” for Hennesey.
Perlin’s work has focused on how design can serve a public good. In 2007, after a series of conversations, listening sessions and workshops with the with Mexican artist and architect Pedro Reyes, he moved to Mexico City to take on the challenges of traffic and pollution that were inhibiting so many residents.. There, he co-founded and built a ridesharing app, predating Uber and Lyft, to help stem those issues. Since then, he has worked on numerous cultural institutions and socially active projects, such as XQ, a project from the Emerson Collective to help transform public school education for the US, Unicef Tap Project with Droga5, and works for cultural institutions such as the Met Museum and others.
Now, in the face of the pandemic and the long overdue attention being given to social movements, he believes there is an even greater urgency and opportunity for human driven design to help support disenfranchised communities across the globe. “What spaces and experiences are needed that will help people feel safe and prosperous in their life journeys? “For HUSH,” he asks, “how can we translate or directly address those needs in the areas of spatial design and technology to truly address a key question: ‘how can we help make lives better?’ It is a very dynamic, challenging time, but with focus on the people, we can actually make a real impact with lasting effects.”
For HUSH Founding Partner David Schwarz, Perlin is a natural fit for the company’s evolving strategic needs. “I’ve known Daniel for some time as an industry colleague, thought leader, artist, musician, and educator, among many other things. In every interaction we’ve ever had, I’ve been incredibly impressed by his warmth and vision, his thoughtfulness and insights, and his almost palpable energy and enthusiasm. He’s consistently demonstrated our cultural values in many of our interactions. We’re so excited for him to join our team.”