WK Circle 2


Last Thursday we held the second WK Circle here at 16 Hanbury Street. It was hosted by Tony Davidson and Renny Ramakers from design gurus Droog was the guest speaker. It was an evening built around discussing open source art for all. Renny came in to the agency earlier in the day to tell everyone about the project that Droog are currently organising in cities across Europe called Urban Play. And during the dinner she shared some of the work which has made Droog the most influential design group in the world that was part of the open source approach. (If you haven’t seen it it’s well worth spending time on their site and looking at some of the amazing things they have produced over the years.)


There were lots of interesting people who came along to the evening including amongst others acclaimed artist Duggie Fields, artist (and spray can entrepreneur) Mike Ballard, and The Woman Known as Tony Davidson’s Sister (aka designer and all round star in her own right, Fiona Davidson).

At the start of the evening everyone had to share an item with the rest of the table that had (and continued) to inspire them in some way. So we had photos of Frederico’s father and grandfather, Andrew from Greyworld did some magic tricks, The Woman Known as Tony’s Sister had a fork from an early stage of production before it had been shaped and ‘grooved’, Tapper had some of his own sketchbooks, Simon had a garage punk record and Martin Morales had his wedding ring which he gave to Michael DaCosta to look after for the evening (to demonstrate showing trust in other people).


After all that, it was time to eat and the food was phenomenal, catering again being provided by Fifteen To You. Unfortunately this is the only photo we have of the food because we were all too busy eating it to worry about taking photos. It might look like a lump of ice cream on a plate of cabbage, but in fact it is monkfish on a bed of kale and lentils.


Throughout the evening everyone had the opportunity to write down things that came to them on their placemats.


(This photo was obviously taken before the scribbles, stickmen drawings and obscenities were written down.)

The evening was a success in bringing people together and, for those that stayed at the office until 230am, a success in providing a ridiculously large hangover the next day.

love film, love Cog

I posted something on here before about our Honda Cog commercial being available for download at online DVD rental store LoveFilm.com. You can find it here.

(I assure you that the comments on the site about ‘greatest ad ever made’ do not come from Wieden + Kennedy employees pretending to be members of the public.)


Interesting to see that Cog, which they have renamed ‘When things just work’, comes second top rated of all the videos in their viral section, with a user rating of 91%. If we compare this with their top rated movies…


Shawshank Redemption comes top with a customer rating of 86%, 5% behind Cog. The Godfather – usually cited by critics as amongst the finest films of recent years – lags way behind with just 81%.

All of which goes to show how daft quantitative evaluation of such things is.

The roses of success


‘Embrace failure’ is one of those little mottos we have at wieden + kennedy. By this we mean…  Never lose your capacity to invent and learn because it becomes too risky. Take risks. It’s better to learn from glorious failures than from losing in the marketplace due to fear of failure and inaction. It’s written on our T-shirts (above). And it’s on an illuminated sign in one of our meeting rooms.


It occurred to me the other day that this same philosophy is explained and celebrated in the classic children’s film Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. This is the scene where the scientists inspire Lionel Jeffries to try again becuse ‘each abysmal failure makes a point’.

All together now, ‘From the ashes of disaster grow the roses of success!’

tony in helsinki


Creative supremo Tony D was in Finland last week to speak at a do organised by Helsinki agency Hasan & Partners. Their client, Helsingin Sanomat, is the biggest daily in the Nordics. A few years ago they got them going on an idea about holding "get togethers" for the creative community in Helsinki. The point was to get everybody together, which rarely happens except at some award shows, and inspire and provoke some discussions within the group.


The sessions are about creativity. Speakers give their insight on what great and successful advertising demands and show examples that illustrate their views.
Previous speakers have included  Jim Carroll  of BBH, Paul Arden of  ArdenSutherlandDodd, Matthijs de Jongh of Kessels & Kramer, Trevor Beattie of  BMB,  and Matthew Bull of Lowe. So Tony, who spoke on the theme ‘Walk in Stupid’, was in illustrious company.


Apparently there were about 300 people there. Did any of our readers attend?

wieden + kennedy stables

This is what you can currently see in our window on Hanbury Street.


Horses spend so much time doing nothing but looking at what’s around them.

They must know a hell of a lot about the world; things we’re just too busy to see.
So slow down, try to make friends. They may even share their carrots. 
INITIAL CONCEPT: Ana Farias, Mickaæl Charbonnel. PRODUCTION+INTERACTION+DESIGN: Mickaæl Charbonnel , Daniel Kupfer and Beck Rainford.

Ana Farias: Creative, analauragt@htomail.com
Mickaël Charbonnel: Art director & Designer, mick@humanbeans.net, www.humanbeans.net
Daniel Kupfer: Interaction Designer, daniel@danielkupfer.com, www.danielkupfer.com
Beck Rainford: Set Designer, beck@beckrainford.net, www.beckrainford.net
Who did what:
Ana and Mick thought of interactive horses on Hanbury street during a placement at Wieden + Kennedy. Their first encounter with the horses in a Hampshire stables a few months later (arranged by Frere Woods of Wieden – PA and superstar showjumper) was a decisive moment. They came back with hours of video that Daniel, Beck and Wieden + Kennedy helped them to turn into a full blown interactive installation. The horses are still learning the ways of the city and they are becoming more and more interactive as time passes. Come visit the stables and say hello. But don’t forget their carrots.

meet big nicola


This is Nicola. She’s currently living in our reception. She was kindly lent to us by sculptor Wilfrid Wood. Wilfird was born in 1968 in London. He studied graphic design and later worked as a model maker on the TV show Spitting Image. He now makes scuplture and some of his figures have been mass-produced as toys.


Nicola was also born in London. She’s made from polystyrene coated with plaster polymer.


She’s a big girl. Literally statuesque.

You can see more of Wilfrid’s work at his website here. He is represented by Dutch Uncle.