‘These Projects Are Ads for Creativity’ is a new artist-first brand campaign by Vans that showcases creativity in its purest form. By enabling their family of artists and creatives to go out and make things—drawings, sculptures, music videos, custom shoes, digital animations, and much more—Vans continues to celebrate the diversity of creativity itself and honors the talented individuals behind the work.
Instead of following a conventional ad campaign approach, Vans has committed their resources to support the physical act of creativity itself, empowering artists to bring their ideas to life in the vast forms that art can play. Unveiled as a digital hub of art projects, this campaign is an inspiring journey of discovery while the website serves as a capsule of creativity that will continue to expand all year-long.
Inviting fans to discover new forms of creativity, Vans puts the artist and their stories at the forefront. Whether it’s San Francisco-based Rewina Beshue’s colorful paintings that explore themes of time, space, and reality; Annabell Lee’s vibrant painted pillows that parallel her bold personality’ Los Angeles photographer Anthony Acosta’s DIY darkroom process; or Hong Kong’s Start From Zero’s disciplined woodworking practice – these artists convey a breadth of creative interpretations that represent a beloved global artist community. It’s through their physical tokens of art presented together that a collective beacon of creativity is manifested.
Start From Zero (@ratscave_sfz) was founded in Hong Kong in 2000 by artist Dom Chan as a street art crew. They have since evolved into a streetwear and woodworking art collective. Using wood they find on the streets, Dom and crew create installations that directly reference Hong Kong’s imagery and culture. With Dom’s signature upcycled aesthetic, SFZ has become the de facto face of a homegrown artisanal movement in Hong Kong. Watch the full creative process of SFZ making a wooden stool here:
Hyunjun Koo (@khyunjun666) is a skateboarder and artist from Seoul, Korea. Easily identifiable by his colorful and expressive approach to both art and skateboarding, Hyunjun can be spotted at local skateparks often laying down complex skate tricks made famous in the 1980s. His love for metal and punk music, and anti-establishment culture as a whole, is a driving force in both his artwork and skateboarding. For this project, Hyunjun created a one-of-a-kind piece of grip tape art:
“Instead of creating advertising that talks about creativity, we wanted to use this campaign as a vehicle to showcase true, physical creativity in all of its forms. So we simply enabled creatives all over the world to make things,” said Rob Teague, Vans global executive creative director. “Drawings, paintings, music, sculptures, video edits, skate spots, crazy animations, weird surfboards, and things we didn’t expect. In place of traditional ads, we as a brand wanted to get out of the way and support a diverse range of people, and their different creative outputs. That’s what Vans is all about – to not just talk about creative expression, but to actively champion it through our products, platforms and campaigns.”
This ongoing creative journey will live on the Vans website all year long, cultivating a digital hub of global projects that will uplift various artist stories and inspire fans to create their own version of creativity in its purest form. Watch out for Vans Philippines’ collaboration with Filipino artists soon. To share your own story and join the conversation with Vans, use #OffTheWall on social media.