11.16.11 /


When the Clyfford Still Museum hired Cactus to help launch Denver's newest cultural attraction, we knew the campaign had to do more than just drive traffic on opening day (November 18, 2011), we had to educate people about Clyfford Still and uphold the legacy of one of the most influential American artists in history.  

To achieve this, we focused on two primary target audiences- traditional museum goers as well a younger generation of art enthusiasts who embrace Still's anti-establishment views.

With two distinct audiences, the integrated campaign had to resonate with both targets while maximizing investment. We knew that we had to combine high impact placements with a clever guerilla and social media campaign to spark conversation and drive engagement. 

To achieve the high impact placement, Cactus found the largest OOH space available in Colorado- the wall of the Denver Pavilions mall on 15th. We installed a giant 200 foot wide Mural introducing both Still and the museum with the copy:

"The Canvas Was His Ally.
The Paint and the Trowel Were
His Weapons. And The
Art World Was His Enemy."

Experience the life's work of an American Genius. 11.18.11

For the broader campaign, we aimed to create intrigue for an outsider artist influential enough to deserve, and rebellious enough to get, his own museum. One-thousand QR-coded, 11" x 17" posters were distributed across Denver and Boulder, featuring one of eight Clyfford Still paintings  - each linking to the mobile art hunt contest app. Users were challenged to find and scan all 8 and, based on their success, win prizes up to the grand prize of San Francisco trip for two to tour the SFMOMA. In addition, users could  follow the museum on Facebook for hints about the poster locations.

To help drive conversation and buzz around the opening, we launched the QR code game at Artwalk on Santa Fe. To draw attention, we set up a giant canvas and invited people to use a custom engraved trowel (which they got to keep) to paint like Still on a giant canvas. 

Check out what others are saying about the campaign:
The Westword
Best Ads
Ad Glitz



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