For its 50th anniversary in 2013, endangered species protection organisation WWF launched a special campaign to raise public attention. Under the heading “The Ant Rally”, a protest rally took place at the Cologne zoo in which hundreds and thousands of animals of the rain forest took part. In particular, leaf cutter ants advocated the rescue of their habitat and the protection of species by marching through their terrarium for four days. With requests such as “Fight”, “Save Trees” and “Act Now” they asked the public for support and donations. Extraordinary about this call was that the “banners” were real leaves with the slogans punched into them. The insects carried them on their back and held them with their jaws in the same way they always do with pieces of cut leaves. The highly effectively staged donation campaign for the anniversary of the WWF attracted enormous media attention and thus also served the underlying purpose of the campaign – to increase the number of donations after the event.
Statement by the Jury
The pure and simple idea of letting the ants themselves protest and promote the raising of donations is simply stunning. The work embodies an outstanding realisation to the very last detail and with a sense of humour. The active role of the ants, which usually carry leaves – though here stamped with requests and slogans – to rally for their own protection and that of the rain forest underlines the sense of urgency more effectively and insistently than it would be possible through other means.
WWF World Wide Fund for Nature, Berlin
BBDO Germany, Düsseldorf/Berlin
Chief Creative Officer:
Christian Mommertz, Sebastian Hardieck, Carsten Bolk