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Mad Men & Artists: How the Advertising Industry exploited Fine Art Tony Rawlins Tuesday 18 February 2020

Fine art has provided advertisers and their agencies with a great deal of material to use in their creative campaigns. In this lecture, Tony Rawlins describes some of the processes by which these advertisements have been created and why the works of Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael and Michelangelo have been a particularly rich source. From the Renaissance through to the present day, fine art continues to provide opportunities to enhance Brand imagery with admiration, humour, satire and irony. A wide range of visuals and video is used to show examples of the original works, the creative process and the (not always entirely successful) advertisements that are the end result.


Tony Rawlins was educated at Highgate School, starting his career in advertising in 1965 as a mail boy with J.Walter Thompson. He graduated through the training system there to become an account director and subsequently worked in a number of agencies before setting up on his own in 1985. There he handled primarily Guinness advertising in Africa and the Caribbean, where he produced many commercials and print ads for them over a period of 15 years. He remains active as a consultant in the industry, but now concentrates on more philanthropic projects - producing a film in the rural villages of Nigeria for the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. More recently he has completed a sanitation project in Haiti after it was devastated by Hurricane Matthew in 2016.  

Tony has been a member of The Arts Society for many years. His earlier lecturing experience includes presenting to client groups, sales conferences and students of creative advertising in the UK and overseas. More recently he has been lecturing to Arts Societies in the UK and Europe.