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The Sims Meets M.C. Escher in Ikea’s New Saudi Arabian Campaign



Leo Burnett KSA tap into our need to sort out the Covid clutter with beautifully illustrated design

The Sims Meets M.C. Escher in Ikea’s New Saudi Arabian Campaign
It’s fair to say that Covid-19 lockdowns have made most people sick of seeing the same four walls. That’s why IKEA’s are hoping to inspire people to make a change or 60 with their new campaign running in Saudi Arabia.

The creative from Leo Burnett KSA and Caustick is a tessellated jigsaw of isometric room designs slotted together. As the eye drifts from room to room, the internal layout subtlely shifts. It’s part M.C. Escher, part The Sims, part honeycomb. 

The idea is to show, visually, that there’s always room to change, displaying over 60 of Ikea’s storage and organisation solutions. It was inspired by the insight that during Covid-19, many of us have picked up new hobbies and interests as well as having to set up makeshift home workspaces. As a result, our living spaces have become more cluttered, and that clutter in turn has added to the stress of an already anxiety-inducing scenario. That mess can create a mental block and stop people changing and moving forward.

Like the rest of the world, KSA has been dealing with the delicate balance of managing Covid-19. Currently experiencing a second wave, the country is under lockdown, with no gatherings at restaurants and gyms as the country unrolls its vaccination programme.

The design plays with repetition to create an oddly soothing effect. In terms of execution, there’s a stunning set of still print and poster designs as well as animated social media executions. The team at Leo Burnett KSA worked with illustrator Jaafar Deeb to bring the idea to life with hand drawn images.

“Art direction wise, all the visuals and items were hand drawn, creating unique visuals with charm and character. We played on the exact repetition of the same room with very slight nuances changing each time, transporting the viewer on a full trip inside the room,” explains creative director Saadi Alkouatli.

Launching on January 9th 2021, the campaign includes three posters and three videos. Each shows a different room, for a different target audience. The first visual is kitchen focused and shows how, the same kitchen, had room to change from hosting a family that ate take out, to hosting the same family that started cooking gourmet meals in the same kitchen. The second visual shows how, literally, the same bedroom had room to change, from being a baby girl’s room to a teenager’s room, gradually. The third visual shows how, a same living room, had room to change, from being a bachelor’s pad, all the way to a divorcé’s living room.


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Genres: Illustration, Animation

Leo Burnett Worldwide, Wed, 24 Feb 2021 17:17:38 GMT