The Outdoor Lions jury awarded two Grand Prix for the first time ever this year, recognizing one ambient execution and one traditional poster campaign at the gala event in Cannes this evening.
Anomaly, New York, won the Grand Prix for its Diesel "Be stupid" billboard campaign, a series that celebrated risk-taking with headlines like "Smart may have the brains, but stupid has the balls." And Del Campo/Nazca Saatchi & Saatchi in Buenos Aires, Argentina, won the Grand Prix for its "Teletransporter" for Andes beer, an ambient execution that provided a soundproof booth (outfitted with sound effects) from which bar patrons could call their significant others and pretend they were not, in fact, at the bar.
Outdoor jury president Tay Guan Hin, regional ecd of JWT Asia, said rewarding two different types of outdoor advertising was necessary because of the evolution of the industry and allows traditional two-dimensional campaigns to compete "on even ground" with technologically enhanced ambient pieces like the Andes entry. In years past, "the ambient work was clearly overshadowing the traditional pieces," he said, pointing to past winners like HBO's "Voyeur," which won the top prize in Outdoor in 2008.
Diesel's "Be stupid" manifesto is "bold, fresh, lively and goes against the flow of conventional thinking," said JWT's Hin.
U.S. juror Kathy Delaney, chief creative officer and president of SapientNitro added: "What the campaign did beautifully was create a tone of voice and manifesto for the target. It was one of the campaigns that did not rely heavily on technology to get the message out, and it was very strong in its voice, tone, manner and DNA."
The jury praised the Andes execution for its understanding of the core male and the execution's universal appeal. "We've all been there," said U.K. juror Jon Williams, chief digital officer EMEA at Grey. "And as long as your communication is based on genuine insight, then you'll score."
Ambient executions won 11 of the 17 gold Lions awarded in Outdoor tonight, a sure sign that the creativity in the segment is flourishing, said Hin.
"If we were poets, [billboards are] haiku. It's the idea expressed in the most profound way," added Grey's Williams. "Now, we move into different uncharted territory. It's where digital meets life. That's what makes it exciting. [It's something] to watch for the future."
In addition to Anomaly's top prize, U.S. agencies picked up three more Lions in the Outdoor competition: BBDO in New York won a gold for the cube installation in its HBO "Imagine" campaign; Wieden + Kennedy in New York won a silver for an ESPN Monday Night Football interactive storefront; and Johannes Leonardo in New York won a bronze for Daffy's "Underground Puzzle."