D&AD Awards

D&AD Black Market Stall

Case Study


Every year the D&AD Awards ceremony is the highlight of the international creative industry calendar. Cunning was charged with ensuring awareness translated into ticket sales which was of vital importance given the huge capacity of 2008’s venue: the Royal Festival Hall on the banks of the River Thames.

Any communication had to focus on the award and the exclusivity of the iconic D&AD pencils (the ‘Oscars’ of the creative industry).


For one day only we set up a market stall at Berwick Street Market, an iconic institution in the heart of London’s adland. Norman, a legendary stall-holder in his own right, was then persuaded to ‘push’ knock-off D&ADs to leading industry creatives. Our "hidden" cameras captured this neferious action, which we would turn into a film and a series of photographs.

Legends such as Sir John Hegarty (BBH), Tiger Savage (M+C Saatchi), Gavin Gordon-Rogers (Agency Republic) and Steve Henry (TBWA) agreed to come down to the market stall, where for a fiver Norman ‘sold’ them an award. Each surreptitious sale was shot in a paparazzi style to stress the scandalous nature of the crime and the desirability of the awards.


Undercover-style photographs, a "hidden camera" film and accompanying ’crime’ story were sold into key industry magazines and websites and maximising PR for D&AD and specifically helping to sell-out the upcoming awards ceremony.

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