This week the ad world trains its eyes on Cannes. But last week the slightly less serious, fun-poking, offence-causing members of the ad world trained their eyes on The Chip Shop Awards, "adland's most notorious awards ceremony", in London. And Sugar&Partners took out the top gong for a press ad for Refuge London that played on the Nigella Lawson/Charles Saatchi domestic abuse scandal.
Sugar & Partners also took Best Charity Ad & Best Topical Ad awards.
“Damon and I are stoked," says Dave Nash, S&P creative director. "Real creativity and expression has no bounds and no rules, this is why we are honored to be added to the esteemed list of brilliantly creative boys and girls who have been awarded the Grand Prix Chip Shop Award. This has to be the most fun show on the advertising calendar."
As it says on the site: "The Chip Shops is the only creative awards scheme that has no rules. Infamously, agencies need not even work for the clients they are advertising and categories include best use of bad taste and best use of plagiarism." Entrants can also make up their own award categories and there are other categories like best work for friend or relative,best ad that really should run and best use of a future technology.
Many would say creativity is often better when limits are applied or when the voice of reason plays a role. And some have criticised the awards for their general offensiveness and the low chances of any client ever paying for it. But there are some great ideas in among the filth (the Best Use of a Shop Window Postcard space category is one of the best), there are some big names doing the judging and some see it as a foil to the over-the-top chin strokery seen at other more serious awards ceremonies. Dave Trott, long-time supporter of the awards, was quoted as saying: "Take the piss out of how seriously advertising takes itself. Take the piss out of advertising's obsession with awards. Take the piss out of a little yellow wooden pencil elevated to the level of The Nobel Prize. And the symbol of a chip with a dollop of ketchup on it does that very succinctly."
And as it openly states on the website: "Those of a faint heart may wish to look away now."
The Chairman’s Award went to The Black Eye Project for their clever stunt to hack the voting on the Chip Shop site. Chairman Nils Leonard said it was ‘wrong in law, right in spirit’.
Dave Nash – CD/Creative
Damon O’Leary – CD/Creative
Hamish McArthur – Head of Design.