Public Statues As Effective Campaigns

Content marketing can take the form of a public statue:

Earlier this year The Defiant Girl bronze statue appeared on a NY Wall street sidewalk, facing the famous Charging Bull. The goals was to pressure companies to add more women to their boards, reports Rachael Levy on Business Insider.

This campaign gained massive traction on the media. Many marketers hailed this bold step.

And in fact, sculptures used to be highly effective MarCom tools of the Roman Emperors.

And if we go further back, to Ancient Greece…

Cyber Horse 2016
Cyber Horse at the Tel Aviv University

“Hey! Look at that gorgeous sculpture of a horse!”

Said The People of Troy. Big Mistake. Huge!

Another iconic public statue that an advertising agency has created for publicity is the Cyber Horse.

The statue was built as an icon for a cyber security conference (Tel Aviv University, 2016).

It was so popular and gained so much media attention, that The Tel Aviv university decided to keep it there permanently.


If you’re interested in seeing how far we have come along since the Roman times; read this story.

It seems now The People are placing public statues to try and overturn their elected ruler.

Augustus is probably rolling in his grave.

The Romans were excellent content marketers. Especially Hadrianus, Markus Aurelious, and Augustus RIP.

They displayed their statues and paintings all around the Empire (which is why we had been able to find Roman relics in Syria, until ISIS came along).
They commissioned portraits to communicate the leadership qualities they wanted people to see. I wonder if anyone has ever printed their list of Linkedin endorsements on a T-shirt. Or at all.

Augustus of Prima Porta, 1st century, Rome

“..the artists was summoned by society to make certain works of visual communication… to inform the public of certain religious event.
Today the designer… is called upon to make communication”

– Bruno Munari, Design As Art, p.31


The Augustus of Primaporta was a piece of propaganda. Or a political campaign – terminology I prefer, obviously.

It portrays him as a great military leader, which is an important quality that he wanted his people to see in him. His arm is outstretched to his troops. His power over the military is evident. The Cupid next to him say he descended from Venus (=he’s divine, literally).

Artful Marketing – Today & Tomorrow

The only recent example of truly artful political campaign that I can think of is the Obama Hope poster. Maybe the current resistance movement in the US will bring on more artistic examples in the future.

NASA is doing something interesting – they take on an Artist in Residence annually to collaborate on communicating with audiences.

The UN decided to do the same (they already enlisted Leonardo diCaprio who made a nice movie, etc.).

This year the UN is working with the Irish painter Siobhán McDonald.
Here is her take on how she can help promote climate change action:

Artists have a role to play in alerting people to certain situations in a way that scientists cannot. 

– Siobhán McDonald

Photo by Siobhan McDonald

I do hope so.

Have something to say about this post? Questions? Corrections? I’m listening

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