Matty Burton’s Cannes Diary #5: A gift

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Matty Burton’s Cannes Diary #5: A gift

Matty Burton, group chief creative officer at DDB Group Aotearoa represented New Zealand on the Cannes Brand Experience & Activation jury. Burton, along with most of the other New Zealand and Australian jurors, writes exclusively for CB.


Day 5. A Gift.

The past few nights and with one more to come there is an award show in Cannes. The readers of this blog know that. Most people are kind of aware that this is going on over here but don’t really know where it is or what it is all about. I hope they never find it to be honest. Because right now, it is, a little world for us, a kind of little package, a small glimpse, an odd assortment of where the industry is heading. If I was a strategist, I’d say that the room was full of early adopters who will decimate this knowledge back through our industry.

We’re here for the creativity. We’re here for the work. We’re here for the effectiveness of that work. Our numbers are small but the power of our gifts are on show. Everybody else in Cannes are like seagulls following this creative trawler out at sea. Sounds pretty good that last sentence – that’s what Dave Droga said last year on stage.

The show finishes and a surge of creative energy emerges from the Palais and spills out onto the red carpet steps, South Americans holding gold high and waving their countries flags, life changing awards for some of these people, for those who won, are now experts in what they do. It’s that simple. Are you good enough? Can you find a way to create work that is good enough?

They look for somewhere to celebrate. Walking past a party on the beach where The National is playing on stage. They are not invited to that one. The next party has Arcade Fire playing on stage. No this one is a media party. The next one has Ludicrous. Sorry, this party is for a big tech giant that just retrenched a whole bunch of people. A tech bro sales hustler tries to connect with someone on LinkedIn using his little QR marker on his latest iPhone. No thank you fuckhead, you can’t even pronounce Cannes you polo wearing, whitening tooth pasted, silicon valley twat. These are the kind of dickwads that put QR codes in the sky. You’ve put so many fucking ads in front of my eyes that are shit and now you are ruining my sky with this QR code. Stay out of my fucking sky.

The South Americans find a little place to hole up, they don’t care where as they are the real winners. They are fucking loving life right now. I wish I wasn’t so reserved sometimes and a little bit more like these people, just leaning right into life.

So the convoluted, semi vague message for today is, if you feel a little disoriented and unsure of the value of creativity then I would highly suggest you put the kettle on and settle down for some viewing of the winners form this week. What you’ll see is something that I have long believed and people smarter than me have said better, so I am going to steal with pride for this next bit – but what you’ll see is that creativity is always the answer. Fucking always.

That’s your gift. Use the one the juries have packaged up for you and I’ll look forward to seeing your work here next year.