Grand Jury Spotlight: Pablo Maldonado
Creative Director, Wunderman BA, Argentina
NYF’s powerhouse Grand Jury represents the most diverse brain trust of prominent advertising creatives from 50 countries around the globe. This esteemed peer-nominated panel provides a 360-degree creative view of the advertising world today.
The 2018 Grand Jury is comprised of Chief Creative Officers, Executive Creative Directors, Creative Directors, Art Directors, Copywriters, Producers and Marketing/PR pro’s all playing a pivotal role in selecting the World’s Best Advertising® winners.
Grand Jury member, Pablo Maldonado, Creative Director for Wunderman BA, Argentina brings years of award-winning experience to the judge’s table. His creative work has earned over 100 awards in prominent global award competitions including NYF, Cannes, Clio, London, Effie, Sol, Wave, Ojo, Diente and 4 Grand Prix at Iberoamerican festivals. Pablo’s work has been featured in numerous global publications and rankings such as Fast Company, Gunn Report, Creativity, ADWEEK, AdAge, The Drum, and others.
In the interview below, Pablo shares his insights on the cultural and social changes influencing creative work today, his personal criteria for choosing award-winning work, the evolving agency/client relationship and more.
New York Festivals: What cultural/social changes do you think will influence this year’s work?
Pablo Maldonado: Gender equality and the violence against women are going to be two of the main subjects surely. And I’m glad those topics are in the spotlight, the accusations about sexual harassment in Hollywood coming up to a public light show that we still are many Fearless Girls away from putting these issues to sleep.
The new devices and technologies, in a year of uncertainty about the future of our industry, will surely result in very interesting and innovative works. Also, with the upcoming World Cup in Russia, any good ideas about football will be welcomed.
New York Festivals: What are your personal criteria for choosing award-winning work?
Pablo Maldonado: It has to move something in me. In my heart, something. At least for a second. I’ve always worked from the gut, and my criteria for choosing comes for there too. After that, I do an intensive rational test of the ad, but I still need that first moment of falling in love with the idea in a gut/heart-level. I put value in craft and technology but only if it works for the main idea.
I’m going to defend any work that moves something in people, ideas that can become part of Pop culture, and that above all, show that we can solve problems in a truthful way.
New York Festivals: In 3 words or less, what do you think about 6 second commercials?
Pablo Maldonado: Stop the Clock, Vodafone. (sorry, 4 words!)
New York Festivals: Has the relationship between agency and client changed at all and if so how?
Pablo Maldonado: I think the biggest change was in the relationship between brands and consumers. Advertising’s place today is very different from what it was 15, 10 or even 5 years ago. Now we spend all day on our smartphones, and we have the “Skip Ad” button. Because of that, there is a revolution in how advertising is consumed and even produced.
The massive media companies are being questioned every day by the public, creatives are not. And this has caused a complicated relationship between agencies and clients. But as in any marriage, the secret is always to reinvent yourself, to have an open dialog and generate trust.
I trust in the great minds in this industry, to help build a new model that allows us to focus on what we do best: make everyone talk about a brand.
New York Festivals: What is your mantra for life?
Pablo Maldonado: “The ball doesn’t stain”, from Diego Maradona, which means that you can make many mistakes in life, but real passion is always intact.