Arknowledge: Art Direction; Then and Now (Bolaji Alausa)

6 Jun 2012

If you check Wikipedia, there are different definitions for the Art Director due to the fact that this
appellation is common to different creative industries. We are however talking about the Advertising industry and so will focus on this industry alone.

This is what Wiki has to say. I would just say that the Art Director is responsible for the visual arrangements of any advertising material. (I hope that is simple and easy to understand) thus we understand what Art Direction means now right?

Right from the 60s to date, Art Direction as a form has gone through diverse changes. Here are some examples and a summary of the technique(s) of that era:

DDB; Christian Aid; Martyn Walsh; Malcolm Gluck; Early Use of Shocktactics; D&AD Silver
Colman Prentis & Varley; Yardley; Robert Brownjohn; Classic Visual Pun; D&AD Silver

Art direction in the sixties was revolutionary due to a dramatic social change and an explosion of energy and vitality.

Collett Dickenson Pearce; Gallaher
Collett Dickenson Pearce; Gallaher
The Derek Forsyth Partnership; Pirelli; Allen Jones; Fetihistic
The seventies was a decade all over the place with a mix of styles and influences without any rallying cry or obvious unifying strand.

DDB; Volkswagen; Barbara Nokes; D&AD Silver
FCO Univas; Ciba Geigy; 2 V&AD Silvers (83/84)
Carter Hedger Mitchell & Partners; Romix Foods; Tony Muranka; Warren Madill
Complexity and contradiction, the designer decade, where style was placed over substance.
Everyone started doing stuff with chalks and gauches and then put some type on it. Designers seriously though they could be artists.

Saatchi & Saatchi; Flying Colours; D&AD Silver
Abbot Mead Vickers.BBDO; The Economist; John Horton; Arguably the minimalist ad of the  century; 2 D&AD Silvers
Jupiter Drawing Room; AAA School of Advertising; Vanessa Pearson; Lawrence Seftel; Cannes  Lions gold
The decade of copy died. Globalization forced Agencies to ditch country specific dialogues and local references in favour of big image-driven 'international' campaigns.
Branding blurred the borders between design and advertising, and art directors had to rethink their core practise due to digital technology.

Saatchi & Saatchi; Club 18 - 30; Mike Sutherland; Anthony Nelson; David Droga; Multiple Entendres
JWT Shanghai; Sansonite; ECD - Yang Yeo/Elvis Chau/Sheung Yan Lo; CD - Hattie Cheng/Rojana ChuasakulAD - Rojana Chuasakul/Hoaxi LV/Danny Li/Surachai Puthikulangkura; CW - Marc Wang; Illusion; Grand Prix Cannes Lion 2011
The art director’s decade
Shortened production process
Measurement techniques

What are your own characteristics for the different decades of Art Direction or do you agree with all the above?


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1 comment

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