For the first time in the Axis Awards 42-year history, the decision was made to take the 2022 Axis Awards online. With over 500 entries, 56 judges, 6 generous sponsors, and what seemed like a million Zoom calls, the creative advertising industry still managed to come together (virtually) to celebrate all the creative excellence in Aotearoa over the past year. MC’d by everyone’s favourite Queen, Kita Mean, it was an exciting afternoon showcasing a plethora of amazing work within our industry and awarding our prestigious Bronze, Silver, and Golds Axis Awards.
Malcolm Poynton (Global Chief Creative Officer, Cheil), and Steve Cochran (Chief Creative Officer, Saatchi & Saatchi), joined five local Jury Presidents on the Executive Judging Panel this year. Their role was to decipher which metals were given out within each category and this year they awarded a total of 22 Gold Axis Awards, 5 Executive Judges Awards, 4 Grand Prix’s, the Axis Google Student Challenge, the Brand Axis sponsored by TVNZ, and the Grand Axis sponsored by Meta.
The show started with a metal-heavy craft category with Assembly taking out the first silver, gold and Grand Prix for their work George Harrison’s ‘Isn’t It A Pity’ in Art Direction and Moving Image. The second gold of the evening went to Blockhead VFX for Sky – The Watch for Art Direction. Two more golds were awarded in Craft to Colenso BBDO for Microplastics, and Ruskin for The Dancer, in Image and Direction respectively. Ruskin also picked up the second Grand Prix of the evening for The Dancer.
It was also a great afternoon for Special picking up a total of 9 bronze, 7 silver, and 2 golds. One in Design 360 and one in Charity – Creative Use of Media for “Rockit” and “David’s Unusables”, respectively. Not to be outshone by taking home the prestigious Brand Axis for their brand building work over the past three years for Tourism New Zealand. This sustained success demonstrates the way an excellent relationship between agency and client can truly enhance brand positioning.
We saw lots more gold throughout the show; in the Charity category for TBWA’s work “The Melanoma Typeface” for Melanoma New Zealand, in the Digital & Interactive category for VMLY&R’s work with “EQC Earthquake Triggered” for the Earthquake Commission/Kōmihana Rūwhenua, and in the Magazine & Newspaper category for FCB New Zealand with “Return To Script Department” for Fire and Emergency New Zealand. Last but certainly not least, gold in the PR, Brand Experience & Activation category went to Yarn with “Tourism NZ: Please don’t travel under the social influence” for Tourism New Zealand. All of this important work shows the way creativity in the industry can be used to change behaviours.
This year’s Grand Axis sponsored by Meta, was scooped up by Saatchi & Saatchi NZ and Global Women NZ for their “Career-Limiting Campaign“. This also scored Saatchi & Saatchi a Silver Axis in the TV, Cinema or Online Over 30’ (Single) category, Bronze in the Copywriting - Film and Video category and took home the win for this year’s Special Award – Diversity & Inclusion as well as a well-deserved Grand Prix award. Saatchi also went on to win a further three Golds within the TV, Cinema or Online 30’ or Below (Single) category for their work with Global Women NZ titled “Career-Limiting Cookie”, “Career-Limiting Tie” and “Career-Limiting Window”. Adding to this haul, Saatchi also snagged a Bronze Integrated Axis for their work with Emirates New Zealand called “In Crazy we Believe’.
Rounding off the 2022 show was the all-important Executive Judges Awards, with Lily & Maisie from DDB Group Aotearoa taking out Emerging Talent along with Bella Rākete & Sam Taunton-Clark from Media Design School being named as the Axis Google Student Challenge winners for their work with Breast Cancer Foundation New Zealand titled “Breast Cancer Captcha”. YoungShand received the For Good - Government & Public Service award for their work with New Zealand Blood Service titled “Unseen Emergencies”. In addition, a huge congratulations goes to FINCH after being named as Production Company of the Year for 2022.
When all was said and done, it was DDB’s night again with 44 AXIS awards added to their metal tally and securing their spot for Agency of the Year. A total of 22 bronze, 14 silver, and 8 gold Axis were awarded across 9 clients and 11 campaigns. But the standout campaign of the night was Samsung iTest which picked up 7 of those golds in the following categories: Brand Experience & Activation – Single, Creative Use of Media - Single , Direct Digital, Experience Design, Mobile & User Experience, User Experience, as well as the Innovation Axis. A Grand Prix sealed the deal before Samsung picked up Client of the Year. The other gold went to Lotto “On Ice” in the Digital Art Direction & Typography category before being recognised with a silver Integrated Axis. DDB have demonstrated creativity across all platforms, all genres and for a multitude of clients. Our congratulations go to the teams that worked to create outstanding creativity in Aotearoa over the past year.
“Creativity is our industry’s superpower. It’s the multiplier that enables exponential outcomes for New Zealand businesses and organisations seeking to connect with audiences and it is the magic that turns rational communication into emotional engagement. Axis celebrates this superpower and this year’s winners once again shine a light on the work we all aspire to. ” said Simon Lendrum, CEO of The Comms Council.