GSD&M Has Kohler Go More Boldly Into TV, Print

GSD&M’s first work for Kohler takes an edgy approach to better match the client’s tagline, “The bold look of Kohler.”

Starting Feb. 14, the Austin, Texas, shop will break three TV spots that present Kohler’s kitchen and bath fixtures as distinctively stylish items that unexpectedly affect people.

In one spot, a rock band trashes a hotel room but becomes transfixed upon finding a hypnotic Kohler bathtub. Another commercial borders on French farce, with a married couple racing each other home, stripping along the way. The first one to arrive home gets to use the Kohler shower.

The spots were directed by Dom inic Murphy, whose credits include commercials for MasterCard and Mic rosoft. GSD&M also recruited photographer David La Chapelle, whose work has appeared in Rolling Stone and Vanity Fair, for a print campaign. In one ad, gothic prin cesses wearing de signer gowns swoon before a marble ized sink console and toi let. In another execution, a four-armed woman bathes with a multiheaded shower unit.

Both TV and print ads retain the tagline of nearly 20 years, “The bold look of Kohler.”

“We felt the ad vertising should be commensurate [with Kohler’s “bold” message], not just workmanlike shots of a woman taking a shower,” said agency creative director Jeremy Postaer. Prior print work, by Grey in New York, featured shots of polished sinks and other fixtures. Kohler has not done any TV advertising since 1996; the most recent spots were by The Martin Agency in Richmond, Va.

The commercials will run on cable and network TV. Two print ads appeared in the January issues of House Beautiful and Metropolitan Home, and will run in additional titles next month.

The client could not be reached.

GSD&M won the Kohler, Wis.-based client’s account last March. Kohler spent about $15 million in 2000 on ads for its kitchen and bath fixtures, and about $15 million on those offerings for the first nine months of 2001, according to CMR.