PERSPECTIVE: D&AD night signals arrival of TBWA as a major creative force

Congratulations to all the winners of this year’s D&AD awards. It appears there’s a genuine new creative force in Britain called TBWA. Trevor Beattie should worry if he is destined never to win a pencil, while the TBWA creative department continues to build on this year’s successes.

Congratulations to all the winners of this year’s D&AD awards. It

appears there’s a genuine new creative force in Britain called TBWA.

Trevor Beattie should worry if he is destined never to win a pencil,

while the TBWA creative department continues to build on this year’s

successes.



With BMP DDB the other major winner, and Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO also

contributing, the Omnicom agencies dominate the UK right now. It appears

that they’re enjoying a virtuous circle of business and creative

success.



One can’t ignore Jonathan Glazer or BMP’s VW achievement either. Glazer

is a genuine talent in the midst of a purple patch. The UK ad industry

will be hoping that he can resist the blandishments of Hollywood for as

long as possible. As for VW, it’s pleasing that the ’protected

species/self-protection’ series won recognition alongside the sublime

’wedding’ execution.



Of all the print work over the past two years, ’protected species’ is

unique work that makes a reader stop and think when flicking through the

pages of a magazine.



On a more quibbly footing, what does rewarding the outpost.com ’gerbil’

and ’forehead’ executions (by the excellent US agency, Cliff Freeman &

Partners) say about the jury? It’s work that would and could never run

here because of its cheap irresponsibility. It’s a one-trick lads’

laugh, deceptively fresher because it’s not British and therefore not as

familiar as other nominees. Its award is a sure sign that there are not

enough women on the juries.



I’m writing before the event, so I can’t comment on whether David

Kester’s ambitious plans for this year have borne fruit. But what’s

self-evident from the 17,107 individual items entered and approximately

2,500 attendees (at pounds 170 a head!) is that under his guidance D&AD

is blossoming.



His success in building the organisation’s training and publications

wings has been well documented, but together with his president, Richard

Seymour, he has achieved a still more difficult task: bringing the

design contingent back into the fold so that D&AD is not an

advertising-dominated organisation and awards night. The clearest

manifestation of this is the remarkable 21 per cent increase in design

entries.



His challenge now is to address the growing perception that D&AD has

little to do with client needs and selling products (a perception

re-inforced by the outpost.com award). This may be an old chestnut, and

there’s not much I can add to my colleague Caroline Marshall’s column

(Campaign, 30 April) questioning the lack of populist campaigns among

the nominees.



However, there’s little in the D&AD awards to demonstrate an

understanding of the huge achievements inherent in two new campaigns I

saw this week: the excellent Mars Maltesers work and the animated

Procter & Gamble Head & Shoulders campaign. Congratulations to DMB&B and

Saatchi & Saatchi respectively.



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