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Most Moving and Memorable Moments of Creativity in 2016

Written by: Steph Ferrer
December 20, 2016 • 7-minute read

Most Moving and Memorable Moments of Creativity in 20162016 was a roller coaster ride for everyone—from the presidential elections (both local and in the US), to the big revelations in the media industry, such as Facebook allegedly misreporting ad metrics and spreading misinformation. For all the lows, however, the year also had its high points—including for corporate creativity. Some companies have made it a point to communicate more than just sales pitches, with messages ranging from public advocacy to support for the arts. These efforts are in some ways culminations of long effort, and in other ways, scarcely-explored frontiers. However you choose to see them, they’re worth a few words for commemoration.

You can’t imitate a master’s art. Or can you?

“The Next Rembrandt,” a project of Dutch bank ING, challenges exactly that notion, using methods not often considered artistic—technology and data analysis. ING wanted to show their support for Dutch art and culture, and worked with other agencies and businesses to get the project going. The group that worked on the project scanned over 300 of Rembrandt’s works and recorded and analysed the details of each piece—the facial proportions, the elevation of the paint in each brushstroke, and the common elements seen in the portraits. With the data as the painter, and using 3D printing as the brush, they were able to make a modern Rembrandt which looks like it was made by the master himself.

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Another brilliant imitation of art was Leo Burnett’s “Van Gogh BnB.” People who’ve wanted to jump into Van Gogh’s “Bedroom in Arles” can finally make that wish come true. The details put into this real room were impeccable and it’s certainly a brilliant way of bringing art into the modern world.

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Check out the two works and other surprising styles of getting a message across here.

Are you watching?

Ad agency BBDO teamed up with a nonprofit organisation to produce “Evan.” This ad’s brilliant use of misdirection delivers a powerful message. In the video, a boy and a girl fall in love through messages etched into a library desk and, well, I’ll let you see the rest for yourself. Get ready for butterflies in your stomach and chills down your spine.

Another similar PSA launched this year handled an issue that several men must straddle—testicular cancer. Starring fourth wall-breaking hero Deadpool, the ad urges men to take a healthy interest in the deadly, but often overlooked condition. It’s exactly the kind of ad that will get men interested and convince them to thoroughly investigate their “smooth criminals.” Check the irreverent infomercial here.

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Thanks for the memories, 2016. I can’t believe #ThisHappened.

It has been quite a puzzling and emotional year, hasn’t it? Spotify certainly agrees and has placed the idea at the core of their campaign for the outro of 2016. The music streaming giant has made use of its data properly--and hilariously, if I may say so. In a case of merging creativity with the little details in big data, Spotify dug deep into their customers’ behavioural information to show just how weird 2016 got. The campaign goes to show that while data provides a lot of answers, it can also raise a lot of questions.

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Twitter bids 2016 goodbye in a moving montage of the year’s most memorable moments, in a video aptly called, “#ThisHappened”. The film was first posted in a blog from Twitter’s CMO, Leslie Berland. What started out with a festive fireworks display soon showed the harsh realities we have had to face, but nevertheless, heartwarming moments were there to save the day. Leslie Berland’s blog post also included more photos of the year’s most discussed topics, as well as the most retweeted tweets of 2016. Look back with us:

Going on a feels trip.

A lot of ad agencies showed off their wit this year. Some were clever, and some were a wonder to behold. Ogilvy continues to shake the world up with a shocking ad that has aimed to spread awareness about an important issue, that is still quite a taboo in the modern era: breast cancer. We all know how women’s breasts are often exposed in the media, and also in public, whether in full view or with little clothing. What we are not exposed to are the threat of having breast cancer, and the consequence of having it since we are not educated on how to look for its first signs for prevention. Since women’s breasts, when fully exposed, are censored in some media outlets, Ogilvy has decided to raise breast cancer awareness through the kind of breasts that are actually allowed to be seen bare in public—men’s.

Have you ever wondered how certain scents emanate corresponding emotions? And have you ever wondered how they would look like if they were to be translated into something we can actually see? Scent manufacturer Glade has come up with the brilliant idea to transform different odours and translate them into all sorts of other things we can observe with our other senses, from colours we can see, to string lights we can feel. The Museum of Feelings in New York was created to engage all of your senses and bring out emotions using their core product -- scent. The museum had different rooms with different scents, which then brought out different emotions and even memories in all the participants. The exterior of the museum itself changes according to New York’s mood in vibrant colours, through social media and real-time data.

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Let us all bid 2016 a fond farewell. For all the times it blindsided us, it also gave us a lot of chances to be creative, and find the light in everything. We’re looking forward to another year of opportunities to create for the world!

Figuring out how you can unleash your company’s creativity? Talk to us:

Steph Ferrer
Steph Ferrer
Stephanie Ferrer is a Social Media Associate at StraightArrow Corporation. On days this Potterhead/full-time geek doesn’t have her nose in a book or making artwork, you can usually find her in movie theaters or binge-watching films and TV series. She hasn’t been everywhere in the world yet, but it’s on her list. She also thinks the world would be better if everything were made of ice cream.



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