TD and Absolut Show Why Art and Brands Go Hand in Hand

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Companies are not only active as arts patrons, they’re innovating in ways that speak to their brands’ DNA. New campaigns by TD Bank and Absolut show how brands from diverse sectors are using art in a fresh way to engage and inspire consumers, especially those who value culture and corporate citizenship.[more]

TD Bank, as part of its corporate citizenship commitment to the environment and especially trees (where money doesn’t grow), is turning the majority of its New York City area storefronts into micro art galleries, including installing pop-up exhibitions at Grand Central Station, the High Line and the Waldorf Astoria hotel in a new campaign, 

Just in time for Fall, the TD Forests: Art for Trees experiential campaign (by Philadelphia ad agency Tierney) is a curated collection of ten artists with NYC roots to create two-dimensional pieces, reprinted, unbranded, on recyclable, compostable vinyl, using soy-based inks. Proceeds from art sales will go to four NYC public organizations, including Bette Midler’s MillionTreesNYC.

Over 22,000 poster reproductions of the works will be given away free and will be on display in the storefront windows of 115 New York City TD Bank branches as well as the three pop-up galleries. After the show, full-size reproductions of each artwork will be donated to ten NYC schools, hospitals and neighborhood centers.

And as a brand long affiliated with artists to create unique packaging, Swedish vodka maker Absolut is launching a limited edition bottle with ties to another New York artist: Andy Warhol. It’s been three decades since Warhol created an original piece for Absolut, which serves as the inspiration for this season’s art bottle, “Make the Holidays Pop” (as in, of course, Pop Art). 

About four million of the Absolut Warhol bottles will be sold worldwide starting in November, with a portion of sales going to The Andy Warhol Foundation. The brand’s mixologists have also come up with cocktails such as Blue Andy and Chelsea Vodka Gimlet.

“Warhol is an icon and Absolut has a fantastic heritage of collaborating with him,” commented Dan Brooks, creative director at Sid Lee New York, to the New York Times. “This is not about being back in the past, rummaging in the past. It’s about looking forward, reinventing… If Warhol was alive today, what amazing influence would he have on night life culture?” 

To support the campaign (hashtag: #AbsolutWarhol), the Pernod Ricard-owned brand is hosting The Andy Warhol Art Exchange, an online platform where artists can exchange digital works from now through December.

In an ode to Warhol’s cutting-edge video art, The Warhol Spirit by Absolut Experience (hashtag: #WarholSpirit) created a on-night-only brand experience/nightclub that included sayings by Andy (such as the one below) on monitors. The event, held Wednesday night in New York, aimed to capture the spirit of the artist and create a contemporary “happening” inspired by his famed non-stop Factory studio, including videos with quotes by Andy rendered into video art.

According to the press release,

During the experience, DJ A-Trak, light artist Schnellebuntibilder and experimental electronic voice phenomena (EVP) artist Leif Elggren will work together to transform sound waves originating from Warhol’s spirit into a one-of-a-kind nightlife experience. Using the sound waves as the main input, the three artists will create a live collaboration where Schnellebuntibilder’s interactive light installation will react to A-Trak’s music, which mixes in Andy Warhol’s words picked up by Leif Elggren’s EVP machine.

To allow audiences anywhere in the world to experience the connection with Warhol, an interactive site will live-stream what sounds are picked up from the EVP before, during, and after the event. The experience is part of the Nights by Absolut program, which brings the brand’s Transform Today campaign to life through a series of transformative artistic experiences. By reimagining what is possible in nightlife through these experiences, Absolut hopes to inspire audience to raise the bar for what to expect from a night out, and empower them to transform their own nights.

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