With Ukraine defending itself against Russia in the war which has been continuing for close to four months now, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy made an impassioned call to all the members of the creative industry at Cannes Lions 2022 to render support to his country.
During his online address at Cannes Lions 2022, Zelenskyy made an earnest request to the global creative industry to extend their support to Ukraine in the war against Russia by not only promoting Ukrainian bravery but also by drawing the world’s attention to the crisis unravelling in his country.
“People like you are the greatest people in the world because you make people talk about issues, which they otherwise tend to overlook,” he said.
Emphasising how the creative fraternity finds apt words and images to reach the depth of the human soul, Zelenskyy also mentioned a series of creative works that drew global attention ranging from the refugee flag, the fearless girl, the ice bucket challenge or the rivers of light.
Zelenskyy concluded his speech by saying, “I believe that the power of human creativity is greater than the power of the nuclear state that is stuck in the past.”
Jamala Susana Alimivna, popularly known as Jamala, who is a Ukrainian Eurovision Winner, also talked about how miserable life has been for the Ukrainians in the past four months where each day has resulted in more than 500 casualties.
Keeping the whole conflict situation in mind, Jamala said, “If we cannot help ourselves, nobody cares. So, I'm trying to use my voice to do something useful for my country in terms of how we can use creativity to stop the war.”
Speaking on how creativity can be used as a power for good, Pasha Vrzheshch, Creative Director, Banda Agency from Ukraine, said, “If we need to stop Russian tanks, we need to stop Russian propaganda. So, in our first week of the war, our creative team turned into creative forces and started doing anti-war propaganda like digital campaigns and videos.”
He further said that the creative fraternity’s ‘superpower’ is promoting brands and in the ongoing phase, his agency has shifted to showcasing Ukraine, and the bravery of its citizens, as one.
“Our superpower is promoting brands, and as weird as it sounds if a country starts promoting itself as a brand during a war, that is exactly what we decided to do,” he concluded.
Also, in a show of solidarity with the war-torn Ukraine, Cannes Lions had decided to waive-off charges for Ukrainian creative attendees whilst turning down submissions and delegations from Russian organisations.