Tahitian Art, Hold the Gauguin

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"Tahiti is a place that exudes art," notes Saatchi & Saatchi/N.Y. CCO Tony Granger. And not necessarily the art of Gauguin, who gets refreshingly short shrift in an oddly low-key, illustration-driven print and outdoor effort in New York for Air Tahiti Nui. The campaign is also notable for its lack of a logo and what Granger calls "overt branding. Travel ads are usually all cliches-sea, sun, sand and a babe in a bikini," he says. "You can stick virtually any logo on them and it will work-yet it won't work that well. We didn't want to use beaches or panoramic sea vistas; the campaign consists of a delicate continuous line that connects something distinctly New York to something distinctly Tahitian." Illustrator Dennis Clouse of Cyclone Design was hired to bring "an artistic sensibility" to the line, and the background is hand-rendered, then retouched "to make it feel like an old piece of Tahitian art." Adds CD Sarah Barclay, "Our idea is to pique curiosity by keeping the ads as beautiful, elegant and mysterious as Tahiti itself." The campaign is expected to expand to the Los Angeles and Sydney markets later this year.

Client: Air Tahiti Nui Agency: Saatchi & Saatchi, N.Y. CCO: Tony Granger CD: Sarah Barclay ADs: Robert Perillo, Danielle Thornton CW: Robert Lenois Illustrator: Dennis Clouse

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