Creative in association withGear Seven

Ireland Stakes its Claim as a Centre of Excellence for Creative Advertising

Associations, Award Shows and Festivals
Dublin, Ireland
Seán Hynes, creative director at Bonfire and Creative Council Lead, IAPI Board on Ireland's cultural legacy and the importance of Creative is Native

Project it up high and light up the sky: “Ireland is the English-speaking creative capital of Europe.” Full stop. Thanks to our muddled neighbours leaving Europe this is now an undisputed fact (remember them?). But it’s also a position we slip comfortably into.

Ireland has long been recognised for its cultural legacy and contribution to the world. We are genuinely world renowned for our writers, musicians, filmmakers, playwrights, composers, poets, animators, photographers, performers, dancers, comedians, street theatre and artists of every imaginable kind. And it’s not just about a particular golden period in history, it’s a creative tap that keeps on flowing. It’s as much about Newgrange or The Book of Kells as it is about Denise Chaila or Fontaines DC. As much about Ulysses as it is about Normal People or Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri. It could be William B. Yeats or The Walls of Waterford.

And soaring right in there with impeccable timing is the recent coming of age of Ireland’s creative advertising industry. Irish agencies are now an established feature when it comes to accolades at International awards festivals including a series of major wins at the Cannes Lions in recent years. Also our younger creatives are making waves and really standing out at International Creative Competitions. In addition Irish agencies are now competing for and winning International contracts that reach beyond these shores.

And what better way to capitalise on this momentum than by creating an initiative that is a world first in itself? 

Creative is Native

On the back of a lot of hard work and widespread goodwill, the Institute of Advertising Practitioners in Ireland (IAPI) has launched the world’s first national advertising portfolio: Ireland: Where Creative is Native or C=N for short, is a platform that showcases the best of Irish advertising from recent years. What makes it a first is that all of the work featured is not attributed to any particular agency. This is an Ireland Portfolio.

It has come about through our entire creative industry working together, taking part and taking ownership. The work is submitted by IAPI member agencies, it is then judged and curated by our leading creative directors representing each of those agencies. The work that goes on to be featured is judged to a very high pre-agreed standard. A world class standard.

It launched in November 2020 to an incredibly enthusiastic reception and is now firmly established with a second round of submissions already under the belt. Creative is Native is very much a live project with Creative Directors meeting regularly to review and discuss. We also have ambitions to expand the platform to include other streams of commercial creativity by getting as many other bodies involved such as the IDI, CPI and ICAD.

Creative is Native Launch

So what does IAPI hope to achieve through the initiative? Well there are two clearly defined objectives. The first is to attract international business by promoting Ireland as a global centre of excellence for commercial creativity. And the second is to attract talent into Ireland by demonstrating the excitement and dynamism of the industry here.

Having a single platform now gives us a perfect focal point to begin the job of achieving these objectives. Everything becomes so much easier when you have a rallying cry and a defined campaign for everyone to get behind.

IAPI has already established a working group to explore ways of achieving the first objective. These will include having a striking virtual and physical presence at International marketing events, particularly focusing on the East Coast of USA. We’re very much hoping to receive support and help from state bodies such as Enterprise Ireland and the IDA.

Achieving the second objective is beginning already with a call out to the vast, widespread and influential Irish Advertising diaspora. The team at IAPI has already started putting together a database for this and have been in touch with many of them personally. In some cases to invite them to come and talk to us at our next Creative is Native event, 'Meet the Wanderers,' which takes place on March 18th. Given the proximity to St Patrick’s Day it seemed like perfect timing. So please join us and click here for details.

Work from The Institute Of Advertising Practitioners In Ireland