How Heir of Atticus Is Resetting Subculture

How Heir of Atticus Is Resetting Subculture

How Heir of Atticus Is Resetting Subculture

In our great influencer-driven era, the e-boy prince has an allure all his own.

In our great influencer-driven era, the e-boy prince has an allure all his own.

Photography: Hector Rodriguez

Photography: @akkioshi

Styling: ARYEH LAPPIN

Text: SAMUEL ANDERSON

Gauge Burek, the 20-year-old content creator and aspiring designer known best by his TikTok handle, “Heir of Atticus,” is a rare bird in the attention-seeking economy. Eschewing cheap bits and challenges, @Heir.of.Atticus content hinges on Burek’s idiosyncratic personal style: Marked by a salt-and-pepper perm and drawn-on freckles, his adorable-yet-macabre aesthetic conjures a living DeviantArt illustration of Timothée Chalamet. 

His hair is both hallmark of his allure and a physical benchmark of inner growth. At 18, shearing his locks served as a personal and creative reset: “I was very uncomfortable with how I looked, so I just wanted to have an ego death,” he says. “I [had to] get over how my hair looked, and become comfortable with my face. [After] I shaved my head, I started getting more comfortable [with myself], and dressing better, I guess.” 

Next came his alias—a reference to both the father in Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird and to his own familial bonds. “My dad and I watch the History Channel a lot, and we were watching [a show about] the King Arthur’s son, the 'heir to King Arthur,'” he explains. “[Later], we were watching To Kill a Mockingbird, and I was like, ‘Heir of Atticus… That’s very me.’ I thought it sounded sick, so I picked it.” Though a father-son pastime may have spawned it, his online moniker also conveys generational differences: According to Burek, his birth name carries unwanted symbolism: “My dad named me 'Gauge' after a gun, and I’m not particularly interested in being associated with that,” says the Las Vegas native. “I respect it and I’m gonna keep my name, but I don’t like guns, so it’s a bit strange.”

As his anti-gun stance suggests, Burek and his fellow e-boys and e-girls—arguably the Gen-Z heirs of “goth”—lack the nihilist tendencies of previous generations. “A lot of people [see] me as an e-boy, because of having darker clothes,” he says. “I feel like just because you wear darker stuff doesn’t mean that you have to be an ‘internet boy.’” 

Though his visual tastes may descend from ’90s goth, his unifying worldview suggests a categorical shift in the subculture. Dark attire and all, Heir of Atticus is here to make the world a more beautiful place.           

Heir of Atticus wears all clothing Celine

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