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The Real Machado

The Real Machado | University Zumbi Dos Palmares | Grey
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basics
Industry: Culture, Recreation & Sport
Media:Cyber
Style: Minimalism
descriptioncnen
Why is this work relevant for Brand Experience & Activation?

The Real Machado de Assis presented by Zumbi dos Palmares University is a
huge direct campaign that recreated the image of Machado de Assis. Although he was
the greatest Brazilian writer of all time, his image was whitened in the past, based on
historical data and recently discovered photos.
We revealed a black Machado de Assis never before seen in the country; and it
became a movement to show the truth and to guarantee that the real picture of
Machado de Assis would finally be known by everyone in a country where 43% of the
population is black.

Background

Machado de Assis is an essential part of Brazil’s culture. His face should be known by
everyone. It is not, however. Because his image was whitened so that Machado de
Assis could be appreciated by the racist society of the 19th century.
Zumbi dos Palmares, the largest university of black culture in Brazil with more than
90% black students, has put this historical mistake right. Thus, creating a true
opportunity for ‘errata’ against prejudice and in favor of diversity.
A historic correction made to prevent the continued perpetuation of racism in
literature; to encourage current authors of color; to give society a chance to reflect on
Brazil’s greatest author; and for all generations to recognize the brilliant black man
that he was.

Describe the creative idea (20% of vote)

Zumbi dos Palmares University recreated the image of the writer based on historical
data and recently discovered photos.
We analyzed historical photographs, consulted the university’s collection and worked
with forensic facial reconstruction specialists in order to recover Machado de Assis's
real face.
And we presented Brazil with the first real image of Machado de Assis. This image was
made available on the internet for people to update their books. Creating a historical
‘errata’ and showing Brazilians the real face of the greatest writer in the country.

Describe the strategy (20% of vote)

To generate support for The Real Machado de Assis movement, our direct strategy
started on World Book Day: we invited readers who had books with the old picture of
Machado de Assis to take them to the university and have them updated.
Digital influencers and important voices of the ‘black cause’ accepted the invitation
and embraced the idea, spreading the image and the website of The Real Machado on
their social networks.
On the website, people also had the opportunity to sign the petition that urged
publishers and bookstores to stop printing, publishing and selling books in which the
author’s whitened image appears and to replace the prejudiced image for one of the
real Machado de Assis.

Describe the execution (30% of vote)

The execution started presenting the real image of Machado de Assis for the first time
in history, generating wide conversation about racism in Brazil, the greatest cause
defended by Zumbi dos Palmares University.
Then, the image was made available on the internet for people to download it and
update their books. Creating an organic, historical ‘errata’ against prejudice and in
favor of diversity.
It spontaneously took over the Brazilian media for weeks and this generated a
movement on the streets and the internet. Politicians, celebrities, authors and
influencers embraced the cause and also signed the petition.
This put pressure on libraries, bookstores and editors to update their books. And it
worked. For the first time in history, a book was printed with the image of a black
Machado. It is on exhibition in the most important institution of Brazilian literature
founded by Machado.

List the results (30% of vote)

TThe campaign spread like wildfire: 230M impacts, USD 106M earned media and the
organic search on Google for Machado de Assis increased by 974% in just one week.
The Real Machado de Assis generated a movement. This put pressure on libraries,
bookstores and editors to update their books. And it worked. For the first time in
history, a book was printed with the image of a black Machado. It is on exhibition in
the most important institution of Brazilian literature founded by Machado. It was the
best result for Brazilian people.

Please tell us about the brand in relation to the locality or market where the product/service is distributed

Zumbi dos Palmares University is a community education institution that aims to
reduce educational inequality among blacks and whites in Brazil. Its main goal is to
enhance the entry of black people into higher education, so today it is the largest
university of the cause in the country with about 90% black students.
credit
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awards
Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity 2019
Bronze Brand Experience & Activation
Local Brand
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