Escapism in the Arts

Creating compelling magnificence and intrigue. Looking into the enchanting, elegant and grand world of escapism as it is encapsulated in art, design, fashion, creating a dream like hope for the future.

There has always been a place and a need for distraction in our lives, but today, in the face of anti-consumerism, the idea of escapism seems particularly relevant.

What if you treated your product/brand like a theater and users like the audience?

A great story has a tight plot and holds everyone spellbound. Thinking like a director during the design process is a great tool for helping guide the user’s attention. Give out the popcorn and raise the curtain!

So what’s your story?

“Narrative” becomes a key theme for the future; the creative art of storytelling is no longer window dressing, but a means of appealing to the consumer and supporting their cause, their  identity, and their values. Does this indicate a need to find a whole new brand identity or simply find a tale worth telling?

Consumer spending is at an all time low as the economic crisis continues, and so it seems that designers and producers are now looking towards fantasy and entertainment to inspire consumers...

…be it the decadent grandeur of the stage, the vivid kaleiscopic experience of the circus, or the timeless elegance of the ballet; and bringing fashion and design into the realms of fantasy and creativity, mystery and imagination. This need for narration, nostalgia and the exploration of intrigue is being felt in many artistic disciplines, ranging from music to art.

Fashion is certainly taking a leap into escapism. Retail and runway collections are beginning to absorb the influences of dance and circus.


Italian designer Salvadore Ferragamo has embraced the world of ballet, uniting primo ballerino Roberto Bolle with and super model Claudia Schiffer in a recent campaign.

Prestigious ballet companies are partnering with architects, encapsulating fluidity and movement, renowned fashion designers are taking a position at the heart off the theatrical arena.


Theater provides the audience with a window though which to escape the troubles of today focusing only on the enjoyment of the stage.


Micro-blogging service Twitter and London’s Royal Opera House may not be seen as birds of a feather. Founded hundreds of years apart, one represents a stronghold of traditional high culture, the other the fizzing surface of contemporary communication. But the tendency of culture to respond to new technology should never be underestimated—over the past three weeks the ROH has been using Twitter to crowdsource the libretto for a new “people’s opera”.

What story allows for the experiences and memories of the viewer, (as in a good mystery), to ‘fill in the blanks’? And what can Brands give to the consumers through their product personas/features as stimulus for the “discovery”? The challenge lies in that our society is saturated with ‘reality’ how can we take products and refresh them into an alternative reality? Maybe that magical capture is in the consumer becoming involved with the storytelling.

In the collective imagination, great ideas take flight.


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