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Art, Activism & Marketing: What happens when the three combine?

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These all came together as part of artist Rafael Perez Evans site-specific performance work Grounding for the Goldsmiths College MFA 2020 exhibition. Dumping 29 tonnes of carrots outside the Ben Pimlott glass building in Goldsmiths College London, which also happens to be adjacent to the Goldsmiths CCA, the work, which itself is based on a form of protest, sparked a protest by the Goldsmiths Carrots

Horrified by the dumping of food in one of London’s most deprived neighbourhoods they started a campaign, taking the carrots and turning them into cake to raise money for Lewisham food charities. The campaign by Goldsmiths Carrots was put together quickly with just an Instagram account, website and stall outside the work. It was timely and asked some really important questions around waste and sustainability in the art world. Raising over £1600 it also contributed to the local area and raised the issue of local poverty. 

It was fascinating watching this story unfold over the last week, and while being very impressed by Goldsmiths Carrots in generating press, it did bring up some questions for us around marketing and activism (as well as around the consumption of art… is this ‘circular art’ as it includes the experience of eating the work?)

We couldn’t help but notice that this campaign not only generated press for Goldsmiths Carrots, it also helped raise the profile of the artist. And this is where a successful campaign like this can be a double edged sword. 

No doubt a talented artist, Perez Evans is also talented at marketing: with his methods and materials generating debate. This type of protest would have also helped, much more than any press release, ensuring the notice of galleries and collectors across the world.

Do you think loud activism is the only way or would a quieter, more direct campaign have been better?

Got an idea for a campaign?

Get in touch with us. We’d love to help you make it a reality.

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