September may have been unseasonably chilly for most of us, but things have certainly been pretty hot here in the Four Colman Getty offices. With two new major clients in tow - the BFI London Film Festival and the Michelangelo Foundation - as well as the 2017 Man Booker Prize and a host of other cultural Autumn treasures, we’ve been hard at it.
First off we had the announcement of the shortlist for the 2017 Man Booker Prize. As ever the news provoked widespread comment and not a little controversy - three Americans out of the six writers. Three women and three men in competition. Ali Smith on the shortlist for the fourth time.
Some interesting statistics. For the first time in its history, the digital team announced the results of the longlist and shortlist online using video content. The shortlist announcement video was viewed by almost 150,000 people in the first 24 hours, and has now been watched over 212,000 times. We've seen a 184% increase on people reached on Facebook this year, with a 20% increase in impressions on Twitter. This was also supported with a Facebook Livestream of the press conference announcement.
As ever, I find it impossible to predict the winner out of what Lola Young, chair of the judges, has described as ‘six unique and intrepid books’ and can’t wait to hear what the judges finally choose on 17 October.
Another winner this month has been David Baddiel, whose fourth children's book, Birthday Boy, has just been published by HarperCollins. David has been all over the media in the last couple of weeks, and I'm delighted to say that Birthday Boy shot straight into the bestseller list to number four. James tells you more below.
In a completely different vein we've been working in September on a fascinating King’s College exhibition, Melancholia. A Sebald Variation, at Somerset House. Inspired by W.G. Sebald’s 1997 lectures, On the Natural History of Destruction – twenty years old this year – works by international contemporary artists have been displayed alongside images of Germany in the Second World War, as well as W.G. Sebald’s own manuscripts and idiosyncratic photography collection. Do catch it if you can - the exhibition runs at Somerset House until 10 December.
In a different kind of show, last week saw 100% Design open its doors at Olympia in Kensington. The capital was abuzz as London Design Festival attracted design lovers from across the globe, with 100% Design very much its commercial heart. For the second year now we handled the PR for the show, which welcomed nearly 27,000 visitors over four days.
The Michelangelo Foundation for Creativity and Craftsmanship was also at Somerset House this month for a wonderful panel discussion to mark publication of the first English edition of The Master’s Touch: Essential elements of artisanal excellence. This work, authored by Alberto Cavalli with Giuditta Comerci and Giovanna Marchello, lays the groundwork for a common language to describe the distinguished work of master artisans everywhere. Again Arthur tells you more below.
Finally for those of you who are fans of Wendy Perriam’s novels, you have a treat in store. Her latest novel – her 26th amazingly – has just been published as an e-book by Endeavour Press. The Independent said of Wendy, ‘Perriam has never been one to pander to expectations’ and this book, The Tender Murderer, is proof of that. Check it out on Amazon.
That’s all for this month but we’ll be back with highlights from the Man Booker Prize and the London Film Festival – to name but two – next month.