Jesse Garza has worked in the fashion industry since he was 21, when he began selling clothing at Chicago’s renowned boutique, Ultimo. Mentored by the store’s founder and legendary style maven Joan Weinstein, Garza rose from working the sales floor to becoming creative director over a period of 10 years in which he collaborated closely with the best names in fashion staging runway shows, creating artful merchandising and adapting cutting-edge design for the Chicago market.
Inspired by the creative partnership of designer Yves Saint Laurent and French businessman Pierre Bergé, Garza moved to New York to set up a luxury lifestyle consultancy with friend Joe Lupo, a banker with a fascination for fashion. With Garza’s A-list Rolodex and Lupo’s business acumen, the two successfully launched Visual Therapy in 1995 based on a sincere belief in the transformative power of clothing chosen to express one’s truly unique personality. Since then, Garza—a self-described “Fashion Evangelist”—travels the country with Lupo to work with a roster of high-visibility clients as well as to appear regularly on the “Oprah Winfrey Show,” where they have been responsible for creating the looks featured on some of the programs highly rated makeover and seasonal fashion shows.