The art of publicity

Artists are hot property at the moment when it comes to helping brands promote their products, with a number of household names launching art-based campaigns. In early August we saw McVitie’s team up with artist Dominic Wilcox in a campaign which saw the artist nibble his way through plates of Jaffa Cakes to create different iconic British designs from London’s Tower Bridge to the Queen. Nice work if you can get it!

Then this week Campbell released some fantastic limited edition cans of its soup in the States to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Andy Warhol’s famous pop art featuring the brand. The 1.2m cans will be on sale in stores from Sunday, costing 75 cents each. The cans will come in four separate colours, and include famous Warhol quotes such as ’In the future everybody will be world famous for 15 minutes.’

And they’re not the only ones using art in PR campaigns. Here at Acceleris we launched a maritime art competition to raise awareness of the UK’s oldest maritime charity The Shipwrecked Mariners’ Society and were blown away by the quality of the paintings by amateur artists.

The winning image ‘Creel Boat at Sunset’ is an acrylic on canvas and depicts a boat on the sea at Orkney. Run across social media platforms http://www.facebook.com/ShipwreckedMariners and via the charity’s website, participants were encouraged to create an original piece of artwork with a maritime theme.  The competition was judged by marine artist Geoff Hunt whose work features on the covers of Patrick O’Brian’s Aubrey-Maturin books.

As an agency our art links extend even further, having also worked with Yorkshire based international landscape artist Ashley Jackson, publicised the opening of the Saatchi Gallery in London and worked on the Damian Hirst exhibition in Leeds among others.

So what’s going on? Is it a case of the public demanding a higher calibre of publicity campaign involving amazing artistic talent as well as creativity and imagination? Or perhaps the artists themselves are now more prepared to engage in a little promotional activity to raise their own profile – we are in a recession after all, I bet even Damian Hirst buys ‘Asda Value’ now and again.

Whatever the reason, it works. Perhaps it’s just me but publicity campaigns involving artists are the ones which particularly stick with me. Art evokes passion and admiration and if brands want the public to feel the same way about their products, teaming up with revered artists is a great way to go about it.

 

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