Two Poets Who Didn’t Know It

Who said art directors can’t write copy?

A pair of J. Walter Thompson, New York, art directors were recently rewarded for their wit, not their visual prowess.

JWT associate creative director Domingo Perez and former JWT art director Ben Wheeler took home a Silver Pencil from the recent 1997 Advertising Club of Connecticut Awards for a campaign for Phil’s Machine & Cycle Shop in South Norwalk, Conn. The campaign was inspired by Robert Pirsig’s seminal novel, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance.

Like the book, the campaign weds the incongruous topics of metaphysics and muffler replacement. According to Perez and Wheeler, spiritual clarity can be as simple as fixing an air leak in your carburetor.

‘To free your heart, your mind, and your soul you’ve got to first free your carburetor’ is the headline for one execution (shown here).

Perez and Wheeler’s work for Phil’s was done under the auspices of the JWT small print program. The program helps local businesses across the country get big agency thinking at a nominal cost, while providing creative staffers with the opportunity to keep their print advertising skills sharp.

Copyright ASM Communications, Inc. (1997) ALL RIGHTS RESERVED