Company: LANXESS Corporation, Pittsburgh, PA
Entry Submitted By: MARC USA
Company Description: LANXESS is a leader in specialty chemicals with 2008 sales of EUR 6.58 billion and around 14,800 employees in 21 countries. The company is represented at 44 production sites worldwide. The core business of LANXESS is the development, manufacture and sale of specialty chemicals, plastics, rubber and intermediates.
Nomination Category: Live Event Awards Categories
Nomination Sub Category: Best Corporate Image Event
Nomination Title: LANXESS Corporation – Unnatural Rubber at The Warhol Museum
1. The date on which this nominated production was first presented:
October 14, 2009
2. Briefly describe the nominated event's communications objectives and how it met those objectives (up to 500 words). After this description, provide URLs to online photographs, video clips, press clippings, etc. that will portray the event for the judges. IMPORTANT: Begin each link with http://, and enclose each link in square brackets; for example, [http://www.youraddress.com]:
This year specialty chemical company LANXESS Corporation focused its efforts on
generating excitement and buzz around the celebration of the 100th anniversary
of synthetic rubber. But how do you celebrate something as commonplace as rubber?
The 100th anniversary of synthetic rubber coincided with Rubber Expo, the
largest U.S. synthetic rubber tradeshow, which was taking place in Fall 2009 in
Pittsburgh, the North American headquarters for LANXESS Corporation.
As the cornerstone of this celebration, Randy Dearth, president and CEO of
LANXESS Corporation, leveraged his role as the chairman of The Andy Warhol
Museum’s board of directors to create a collaborative judged art competition at
the museum. LANXESS Corporation worked with The Andy Warhol Museum to create the
Unnatural Rubber Artist Challenge. In May 2009, the museum reached out to 15
international, contemporary artists to ask them how they would celebrate the
100th anniversary through art, using LANXESS’s synthetic rubber as the medium.
The objectives for the Unnatural Rubber event were to increase customer
awareness, participation and interest; global media awareness and earned media
interest; and acceptance by the art community. Additionally, LANXESS was careful
to strike a balance between branding the event as a corporate sponsor without
distracting from the 11-foot by 7-foot hanging sculpture and accompanying
artwork in The Andy Warhol Museum. LANXESS also needed to consider the
appropriate event logistics, since journalists would need space to speak with
LANXESS representatives. Understanding the wide-range of attendees, LANXESS
needed to carefully consider the food, drinks and atmosphere for the venue and
The winning sculpture, “Wheel of Fortune” designed by Hank Willis Thomas and
Ryan Alexiev, was a giant, timeline of rubber production from 1909 to the
present day, hung from the lobby ceiling of The Andy Warhol Museum, where all
guests at the October 14 event would see it immediately upon arrival. While the
location was ideal, it forced a typically brand-heavy LANXESS to scale back on
signage and logo usage in the front lobby of the museum. The lighter branding
approach worked harmoniously with the interior of the museum and allowed the
art, artists and guests to take center stage.
LANXESS created two themed drinks to celebrate their history in rubber. One, the
Uncle Fritz, was named after Fritz Hoffman (the inventor of synthetic rubber),
and the other was the Rubber Ducky. Both were huge hits – especially the rubber
ducky sugar cube that accompanied the Rubber Ducky drink.
LANXESS encouraged guests to tour the entire museum at their leisure. With seven
floors to navigate, LANXESS created a museum directory that doubled as an event
By all accounts the Unnatural Rubber event was an overwhelming success. More
than 200 people attended the event. With smooth and efficient logistics,
attendees who had just spent the previous six hours at the Rubber Expo tradeshow
were able move through the check-in process and head for refreshments or one of
the two bars.
To handle media and customer requests, LANXESS staged docents with key customers
and journalists so that they would have easy access to the artists, museum staff
and LANXESS executives. The media coverage was plentiful and can be viewed in
the Media Clip Book.
Internal LANXESS Event Information
• Unnatural Rubber Event/Exhibit Web site: http://www.unnaturalrubber.com
• Randy Dearth’s opening remarks: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NptRtDsMcNo
o Transcript of remarks:
• LANXESS Web Magazine article:
• Media Clip Book Sent via mail
• Unnatural Rubber Event Book Sent via mail
3. List the appropriate creative and production credits for this entry: Advertising Agency/City: Client: Art Director: Cinematographer: Creative Director: Designer: Director: Illustrator/City: Music Producer/City: Photographer/City: Printer/City: Producer: Production Company/City: Programmer: Writer: Web Development Firm/City:
• LANXESS Corporation Corporate Communications Team/Pittsburgh, PA
• 3PC Media/Pittsburgh, PA
• The Andy Warhol Museum/Pittsburgh, PA