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Lowe and the Love of Creativity

Awards and Events 567 Add to collection

Zoe Lazarus and Jose Miguel Sokoloff explain the power of the Nova Awards

Lowe and the Love of Creativity

Still from Luke Franklin's winning work 4 Bothies

Creativity for creativity’s sake. It’s an ideal that Lowe and Partners is nurturing with its scheme to support the most innovative young artists. The Nova Awards, which is now in its third year, acknowledges ground-breaking work from the students at Central Saint Martins as well as the most creative and transcending work to emerge from within the network.


The winners were revealed at an exhibition and ceremony hosted by Lowe and Partners Chairman Tony Wright at London’s Royal Society of Arts last night. The main prize of the night, The Nova Award, went to Luke Franklin, a student on Central St Martin’s Art & Science M.A. course. He was awarded for his 4 Bothies project which has seen him construct four shelters in secret locations in rural Ireland. The Nova 2013 Runners up are Colin O’ Dowd for his Product Design project, STIX Children’s toys and James Beatham for his project  for his BA in Fine Art XD Pathway ‘Proposed Solo Show’. The Unilever Magic Award went to Amy Radcliffe, a recent graduate of Central St Martin’s MA in Textiles Futures. Her project ‘Scent-Ography – a Post Visual Past Time’  - explored the relationship between aroma and memory by creating what she describes as ‘an analogue odour camera’. 




According to Zoe Lazarus, founding partner of the Lowe Counsel and creative director of Nova, the awards are a way of reconnecting with creativity in its purest form. “From a company point of view, Nova exposes our company and our clients to that raw creative talent,” she said. “When you’re a student you have that attitude that anything is possible and I think it’s important to be reminded of that spirit of possibility and to think broadly. If anything that’s what we’re trying to do.”


The ceremony also featured the first Azul Award – and prize given to a piece of work from within the Lowe network. The idea was to judge work from the agency against the same criteria used to assess the student’s work. Unlike most awards, agencies were not invited to submit work for consideration – instead the internal judging panel trawled through the network’s output.


The winning piece of work was ‘Bullying Simulator’, a digital campaign aimed at tackling cyber bullying for Swedish charity ‘Friends’. 



From left to right: Jose Miguel Sokoloff, Rickard Villard & Tony Wright



Jose Miguel Sokoloff, Chairman of the Lowe Counsel praised the thought-provoking project: “It addresses a very real problem in a very real way. It says ‘this is what you would have to go through’. It makes you think and work that makes you think is a lot better than work that makes you laugh, makes you smile, makes you forget. It uses Facebook and the Internet in the way it should be used.”




All of the shortlisted work was selected on the basis that it was ftranscended neat categories. “I think the three pieces of work from Lowe that we’ve shortlisted stand up really well against the student work,” said Lazaurs. “They’re all examples of work that goes beyond traditional advertising. There’s a level of creativity that crosses over to art. The point about improving people’s lives or giving something more comes across in all of the shortlisted work tonight. Things like Colin O’Dowd’s ‘Stix’, and Luke Franklin’s ‘4 Bothies’ are about ideas that go beyond the categories of the subjects they were studying. Those pieces can stand alone, in their own right, against all other media.”



Going forward, Sokoloff hopes that the Nova Awards will inspire creative to engage with and seek inspiration in the arts. “Creatives tend to spend a lot of time looking at what advertising is out there. Sometimes we spend so much of our time doing that that we don’t look outside. This will make everyone is our network look at things in a completely different way. They will see the work and it will open their minds. If you watch too much advertising to produce advertising you run out of steam.”


As for Lazarus, she hopes that the Nova Awards will not only resonate within the network but will also inspire other agencies to pick up with baton. “I think to support creativity for its own sake and to recognise the power it can have beyond just selling products is a rare and actually quite a brave thing to do,” she said. “I don’t know of many other agency networks that do.  Some clients do, but it’s less common in the agency world. I’d like this to continue for years to come and to inspire clients. If creativity is your currency you should be supporting grass roots creativity.”


This is one of my favourite parts of my job Doing it every year and talking to the students reminds me why I am in my job, why I went into advertising. It’s because I like creativity and I like ideas – and here they are in their purest form. It really gives me a boost for the rest of the year and I hope it does for other people.”

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Categories: Sports and Leisure, Events

MullenLowe Group UK, Fri, 06 Sep 2013 15:36:49 GMT