The Agency Issue

Creatives You Should Know: Guga Ketzer

Chief Creative Officer/Partner, Loducca Sao Paulo

By Published on .

Guga Ketzer
Guga Ketzer

Loducca got the world's attention in February this year when it unveiled an addictive digital-meets-real-world experience for Red Bull called Street Art View. The website, which was powered by Google Street View, allowed visitors to ogle street art from around the world, up close and in situ, and snap and share their favorites, helping to build the world's largest street-art collection. It was an instant hit, lauded by art, creative and mainstream sites.

The project was hardly an anomaly for the agency, which has turned out a string of notable brand efforts drawing on a range of media from T-shirts to Twitter.

Jose Augusto (aka Guga) Ketzer, a former journalist and Cannes Young Creatives winner, is the creative ringleader who has been steering the agency's work, in his words, toward "the nontraditional and nonconventional." Mr. Ketzer joined the agency in 1999 as a copywriter and was recently made partner.

"Ideas are bigger than mediums," he said. "But at the same time I consider it possible to create different and innovative things in so called traditional mediums."

Which explains some of the agency's platform-spanning work. Examples? A print ad for Brazilian highway company CCR that served as a working breathalyzer and, recently, in support of MTV Brazi's new brand identity, The Music Never Stops, a line of hybrid band T-shirts that has one side featuring half a logo of a present-day band and the other side half a logo of the band that inspired them (so, The Beatles/Oasis, etc.).

The shop also recently created TwitTV, a web content channel based on trending topics on Twitter. That project was born out of an agency initiative whereby creatives are asked to present unconventional ideas weekly.

While digital projects count for much of the shop's high-profile work, Mr. Ketzer focuses on digital as "an attitude," and uses available tech tools, rather than heavy programming. "The digital world is changing human behavior and to label it as a media is to narrow it way down. The main thing is to understand the human being. I think the essence of creative work, since the beginning, has always been to understand and to be sensitive towards the human being we are aiming to communicate with. For this reason, I look for a team that has this understanding and is willing to seek ideas that get through to the audience and not just themselves," he said.

With economic growth and the business world focusing so much attention on Brazil, Mr. Ketzer said the country's creatives are empowered to innovate.

"We are a country with a young population," said Mr. Ketzer. "When I started, many people wanted to work outside of Brazil. Nowadays I am getting used to receiving a huge contingent of emails from people wanting to work here. I want to work on global projects more and more without having to leave the country I was born in and love. I think we're prepared for this."