Words by Fiona Jenvey, CEO Mudpie.
New Creative forces challenge convention on a global scale via frugal innovation, calling for a complete reset on how the industry buys, sells and develops products. Read on to discover how ‘Evocative’ is explored through our three trends ‘Expressive’, ‘Reflective’ and ‘Wanderlust’.
As people continue to opt out of capitalism, 2013 and beyond will see a rise in the serendipity in once in a life time experiences. ‘Wanderlust’ acknowledges a new quest for adventure and accomplishment and is inspired by a renewed zest for adventure within the natural environment. A predicted 70% rise in adventure travel over the next 3 years shows a revived appreciation for travel off the beaten track. The demise of the celebrity gives way to a new attitude towards role models: adventurer explorers of past and present are being heralded as the new heroes of our time, with luxury brands such as Rolex and Dunhill using the likes of expedition leader Sir Ranulph Fiennes and high-altitude mountain climber Ed Viesturs in their marketing campaigns. Like the master craftsmen we acknowledged as role models for SS13, these adventurers share a high level of determination and skill. In this world of change, the most important lesson for brands is to be creative, collective and above all, extraordinary.
The growing consumer interest in Eastern Europe forms the basis of our ‘Reflective’ trend and is explored in an exhibition called ‘Ostalgie’ – a reflective look at nostalgia for the old European East such as Berlin, Prague and Warsaw. It is also worth noting that the collapse of communism marked a turning point in the approach to living conditions in the Eastern bloc and the birth of the ‘consumer’ in the Western world, particularly the USA. The relationship between Russia and the USA is also highlighted across graphic and packaging design with nostalgia for typographic and poster design from the cold war era. Indeed, such creative interpretations reign further across design, fashion and film with a series of new films cataloguing historical events in Russian history due in cinemas in 2014 and 2015: ‘Stalingrad’, ‘The People’s Act of Love’ and ‘Red Star’ are set to explore the principles on which the Soviet was founded and the cultural and social impact it had. It is this relationship between past and present that sees countries from the former Soviet era step up to the role of cultural leader.
While the developed world continues to flirt with disaster, gone is the arrogance of western nations and their global brands. China is set to overtake the USA as the world’s largest importer by 2014 as it consumes more from the Western world. Certainly, the West is no longer an economic template for ex-communist countries; beyond China we see Eastern Europe and Russia experience a coming of age. The Winter Olympics in 2014 regenerates Russia; indeed the Russian sportswear market is expected to grow at an average growth rate of 16-19% per annum during 2012-17, spurred on by investment by foreign brands entering the region. The growing economic and cultural influence of Eastern Europe and Russia is further supported by key events. Between 2012 and 2016, the European ‘capital of culture’ will be in an Eastern European city every year; Russia, meanwhile, will play host to the G20 Summit in 2013, the Olympic Winter Games and Grand Prix Championships in 2014, and the Football World Cup in 2018.
In the creative fields, and as explored in our ‘Expressive’ trend, the creative vision from SS13 continues with ‘off capitalist’ creative initiatives. Collectives such as the ‘Taschelles’ in Berlin, ‘Rue Rivioli 59’ in Paris, the ‘!WOWWOW!’ Collective in London and new organisations such as the ‘No Longer Empty’ movement express their political and creative views which resonate with disengaged consumers around the world. In the USA, Detroit is also modeling life after capitalism, with the city’s growing ‘aesthetic community’: an inclusive collection of creative minds working in the same location.
While austerity is killing Western economies, this paradox of thrift creates a new frontier for business as alternate enterprises rise from the ashes of capitalism. Brands will rush to place product within collective spaces and cultural venues, hoping to retain their status within this new social order.