Wednesday, 24 June 2015

art for heart's sake

“A belief in creativity for the sake of creativity is a necessary condition for the success of creative companies,” says Gordon Torr in his excellent “Managing Creative People.” (Wiley Press),

Diesel, the purveyor of all things cool, trendy and grungy, have long believed this. You can see it in the post-eighties, industrial broken-downess of every store, it positively drips from every edgy company press release and, of course, runs riot across their advertising.
The latest offering Farfar, their Stockholm agency, is rather bluntly called “Hairbath,” it comes in three episodes and involves, well, a bath full of hair and a voluptuous young thing writhing in the huirsuit clippings sent to her by admirers. It’s very creative. You can tell because it’s shot black and white by someone called “Legs” of production company “Legs” of New York. I have no idea what to make of it all. It is as beautiful as the model is. However, by donning the hair-shirt of “creative for creative’s sake” it rather confuses the any advertising message, unless it’s saying, “our clothes feel hairy.” Slip into at: episode 1
episode 2
episode 3.

Some time in the 60’s the Kinsey report declared that we think of sex 40 times a minute or some such nonsense. The latest two commercials from Durex, the creators of rubber barriers, certainlty show that when given the chance adland’s creative forces can certainly bend their talents in that direction.
From McCann Madrid we get a film where our horny Spanish cousins can’t seem to stop themselves thinking of a bit of afternoon rumpy pumpy. They see jack hammers pounding and think, “time for a shag,” or cups vibrating on tables and go, “well, time for a shag,” and….
It’s all rather amusing but a tad old-fashioned looking. Get a look at:
In Altanta they have squeaky clean sex.
Two balloon rabbits made from different coloured condoms approach each other cautiously, sniff each others behinds, as you do, and then, erm, get it on. In a frenzy of rubberised squeaks they shag in various positions until a third bunny joins in. It’s very funny and nicely produced and might even sell a few life-saving contraceptives. Have a laugh at:

Creativity for its own sake is in show in Brazil, where Almap BBDO have decided that what every VW drive needs is a pet, in this case one that’s half dog, half fish. It frolics in the waves, gets chased by cats and caught by fishermen in nets. Actually it seems that owning one would generally be a pain in the arse, maybe that’s the subliminal message, the new VW ……. Is going to give you sleepless nights. Anyway, the ad is funny and nicely achieved and was probably a good laugh to put together. What else can you ask from your job? Reel it in at:

Animation has come a long way since Donald quacked his first spluttering hello. In the hands of talented creatives it can make a whole world of Pixar driven wonder and create more magical dreamscapes than otherwise possible with real life filming. In the hands of JWT Paris it can create pointless drivel. Their “Fight for Kisses” spot for Wilkinson Sword uses that annoying type of 3-D imaging that is neither reality nor fictional, the smooth skinned androids with too big eyes, too smooth movements and a decidedly spooky demeanour. It’s long and dull and it’s a technique disguised once again as an idea. Bore yourself stupid at:

The Guggenheim in Bilbao is crammed with proper Art of the modern variety. The agency realised that many people are dubious about the integrity of anything that isn’t a lovely bowl of fruit or a half-naked woman lounging around a picnic area. The commercial opens on a security guard making his way through the collection to his allotted space. As he walks he mutters to himself.
“259,200 minutes guarding this…”
He reaches his exhibit and we see Dali’s “Lobster telephone.”
“…a telephone with a giant prawn on top… who would ever steal something like that? Sure I could make that!... or a gas bottle with a bra…or an anchovy wearing a tux at a computer… that’s it, I’m a genius, it’s no joke. But how would I face my workmates?”
He bends to look closely at the Lobster telephone and muses, “Does this thing ring, or clack, clack?”
Super up line “Guggenheim Surrealist stuff. Dreamers welcome.”
It’s a nice piece with just enough irreverence to highlight the genius of the artists rather than pour scorn on the exhibit.
The thing about giving creatives their head, as it were, is that while most of us are calm, grown up types who dream of Volvos and weekends with family, some of us are altogether different animals.
The guys from McCann Singapore are obviously not to be messed with, their ad for X-Box entitled “Hunting Season” is an odd number. Two red necks go hunting in the woods for deer, they chase droppings and finally track down… a sheep. They build a fire and toast marshmallows on twigs, then, fool about using twigs as antlers to act as deer, until one of them is shot in the backside. It’s ok. Not great, and definitely not as ground-breaking as other X-box work. Actually to be brutally truthful, it’s a waste of a decent brief and a client who loves challenging work. Track it down at:

In the Brazen Head the other night things were a tad hectic, the air heavy with sarcasm, stern words were exchanged over a pint of Pilsner or three. The Heineken promotion is in full swing, showcasing the German grasp of creativity fully there are lanyards, and bottle openers and bags and dog tags and rather oddly, flip flops.
My art director is flopping around in them, flips flops the size of the Bismarck with the Brand name imprinted on the soles, it’s funny what a few bottles of bubbly will bring out in a girl, but that’s what happens when you release the creative spirit.

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