Wray Ward Re-creates Glass Acts for Museum

If you’ve never heard of Seattle artist Dale Chihuly, you’re not alone.
That is why Wray Ward Laseter chose to focus on the artist’s medium–blown glass–as the visual centerpiece in its campaign to publicize the Charlotte (N.C.) Mint Museum of Craft + Design’s current exhibit devoted to his work.
Rear bus panels used for transit advertising read “I brake for glass,” and picture one of Chihuly’s colorfully ornate pieces. An outdoor billboard shows a huge, empty bottle of glass cleaner, with the headline “The Chihuly glass exhibit is ready.”
A quirky television commercial features a peculiar museum security guard popping the bubble wrap packing material used to keep the glass intact during transit.
“Our research indicated people weren’t highly aware of Dale Chihuly,” said Jennifer Appleby, senior vice president and executive creative director at the Charlotte, N.C., agency. “So the campaign is designed to grab attention with color and strong visual images. But the copy is what makes it work.”
Wray Ward Laseter’s series of print ads highlights the artist’s glass creations with copy written as responses to individual pieces. Headlines include “He swears he was never abducted by aliens” and “If glass is blown, this must be a hurricane.”
The pro bono campaign runs through the length of exhibit, which closes in mid-January 2000.