Archive for June, 2010
Now that the US has been knocked out of the World Cup and my summer’s ruined, it seems fitting to look back at how it all began for our boys in South Africa. Lego put together this great, and eerily accurate, video of England goalkeeper, Robert Green’s blunder in the opening match, which helped us eventually win the group.
Funny thing about the Lego representation is that the movement is about as fluid as Green’s was throughout the match. Enjoy the rest of the tournament, and recall the joy our boys brought us for the two weeks that seemed to go by too fast. Check it here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gXo2nm2ODF0
Summer is a time for music – weekend festivals and free outdoor shows. It’s also the time for new releases. This summer, Kele Okereke from Bloc Party is taking chances. Now solo albums are generally interesting listens. Whether it’s a triumph (Stephen Malkmus of Pavement) or an unmitigated disaster (Travis Morrisson of the Dismemberment Plan) the result is usually an exercise in indulgence, with the artist exploring the elements of their style that their band mates managed to keep in check.
Kele Okereke’s solo work definitely falls into this category. If you’ve listened to Bloc Party over the years it’s clear that they’ve been on a trajectory from angular post punk to electronic. Now that Kele’s started releasing music as a solo act, it’s evident who’s been the driving force behind this direction. Check out my personal favorite “On the Lam” here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kA-V37Z8vdw&feature=related
This year’s World Cup exposed me to a concept that has filled me with confusion and jealousy: recruited fans. I have aleady heard of two instances where fans were actually recruited to attend matches – the cases of North Korea and the Netherlands (according to Foreign Policy Magazine and BBC News respectively).
For the North Koreans, many of their fans at their first match against Brazil were not North Korean at all. They were Chinese. A thousand comedians and other pop stars hailing from North Korea’s only ally were hand-plucked to blow vuvuzelas for Best Korea, few of whom (ok, none of whom) are capable of obtaining visas.
The Dutch group consisted of thirty-six beautiful women recruited by a Dutch brewery to cheer as a group and attract camera attention to their attire – orange dresses that were part of a give-away marketing program for the beer. This act has been labeled a “Marketing Ambush” by FIFA, who is taking legal action against the brewery. Suurre they will.
Unfortunately, I am neither a Chinese pop star (yet!), nor a beautiful Dutch girl, so I stood little chance of being recruited by either group. But hey, a guy can dream.
The Victoria and Albert Museum in London has a new exhibition that speaks, I think, to what we do here at MKTG INC. The V&A invited nineteen architects to submit plans for tiny structures representing the concept of escape, and then they built seven of them. They’re nestled among the regular exhibits, and visits can actually enter and explore them.
My favorite is Ark by Rintala Eggertsson Architects, a wooden tower with walls of books that surround a central staircase and little reading nooks–you experience the structure itself in real life, and you can also experience the worlds hidden in the books in your imagination. All of which shows yet again that unique, immersive experiences can be utterly transporting and powerful. Via treehugger
I’ve been trying to keep you in the loop on Trustocorp activity- check the older posts. The latest is right in our neighborhood and it’s all-out war on Mr. Brainwash. Gotta love art beefs.
Designer’s everywhere know the Pantone panoply of colors. The chips, the books, the color wheels—the insane number of shades and coatings. Quietly, Pantone has become a licensing dynamo, too—everything from chairs to eyewear. Takes a certain cheek to have a portfolio of licensed products based almost entirely on color. Because, you see, anyone can make a purple mug…ah, but do they have a Pantone chip on the handle? I want one.
With the World Cup under way…interesting article in the NY Times about different national approaches to growing soccer talent. Seems we’re doing it wrong. It’s a long article, so if you can’t manage the reading, I broke it down.
3 million kids play soccer here—we play way too many games at the expense of training and teaching skills. We produce incredibly fit players with little imagination. The Dutch have an amazing system for churning out high level players. The Dutch are mirthless automatons. And college soccer is a complete waste of critical development time (I can attest to that).
MKTG friendly Jonathan Cane started Race Across the Window in 2008 after losing his mother to cancer. Three years later, the charity has changed, (this year’s event will raise money for Challenged Athletes Foundation), but the fundamentals remain the same – eight riders, 3000 miles, seven 24 hour days, and one Computrainer in the Window of Jackrabbit Sports on 14th Street (between 6th and 7th Ave.)
Check out www.raceacrossthewindow.com for more information, and catch MKTG’s own Scott Towle in the coveted 6am – 9am slot.
Stream videos at Ustream
Nothing catches my interest like a beautiful piece of informational graphic design, so when I came across Adrian Newall‘s Scoreline series of illustrated soccer goals I found my new obsession! They’ve rolled out with the entire catalog of World Cup Series Finals since 1934, followed up with almost 10 years of Champions League Finals and topped it off with a stunning display of Thierry Henry‘s career goals for Arsenal (226 in all – a team record). If you grab one now (£35 post included), they might just be here in time for kick-off!
With Dennis Hopper’s passing last weekend from prostrate cancer complications there’s been abundant reminiscing about his roles in classics like Easy Rider, Apocalypse Now, and Super Mario Bros. But for a generation of football fans Hopper will always be Stanley, the half crazed ex-NFL referee stalking the best players of the mid-90’s.
Great commercials and they couldn’t have done a better job casting.