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Don’t Wash the Art Off

In a time of drought, responsible citizenry is getting involved in any way that you can and the arts are an ideal avenue to relay messages to the public. Considering both these points, one Namibian advertising agency, Advantage Y&R, decided to put together a campaign that would challenge responsible citizenry and used Namibian artists to get a message out to Namibia. A message about conserving water, that message is, “Don’t Wash Me.”

Don't Wash Me 1In an attempt to promote that Namibians wash their cars less frequently in a time of drought, celebrities donated their cars and artists used their cars as a canvas to create temporary pieces of art in the car windows. The works of art were made using sand and clay and send a strong message about life and our relation to water.

Hoping to start a movement of Namibians who see their sandy cars exteriors as a badge of honour that demonstrates the driver is a water warrior, the “Don’t Wash Me” campaign rationale states that “Our behaviours are rooted in our beliefs. An example is the commonly held Don't Wash Me 2belief that your car must be spotless and shiny to carry a sense of status.” Their rationale goes on to say that “Our idea is to challenge this belief. Ultimately, we want to challenge all ideas that are culturally engrained but not conducive to sustainability.”

As such the campaign was launched in partnership with the City of Windhoek that saw nine local celebrities donating their cars to be used as the canvas, and nine artists using the cars to create artistic masterpieces that speak about water and water saving measures.

Don't Wash Me 3This art exhibition is intended to start a movement of dirty car pride and as such Namibians are being encouraged to wash their cars less often, and while their car is dirty to use the dirt as material to write a message for other Namibians to remember that water is life.

For more information, have a look at the Don’t Wash Me campaign Facebook page : Don’t Wash Me Nam