Tuesday, October 23, 2012
The LENS Achieves Its Highest Status - Infomercial Recognition
The arts community must be cringing, Michael Maltzan is probably not returning calls and I can't wait for the City to put a positive spin on the LENS' latest supporter.
The Tampa Bay Times is reporting that TV pitchman Anthony Sullivan is starting an "unpaid" campaign to support the LENS. Not to take anything away from Mr. Sullivan a very successful protégé and partner of Billy Mays, who is without question one of television's most successful pitch men.
From CNN Money: "When Mays and Sullivan are debating whether to shill for a product, their mental checklist could easily be a decision tree for a new product launch at a major corporation. "First, it's got to have mass appeal," says Mays. "If you can connect to a broader audience, there's just a better shot of making it work. Second, the product needs to solve a common problem. I need to be able to show that it makes one's life easier. And also it gives instant gratification, hits you on an emotional level." Both Mays and Sullivan swear that believing in the product is essential to being able to sell it".
Mays and Sullivan built a very successful business promoting products that we didn't know we needed. The LENS certainly meets some of Mays an Sullivan's requirements. The whole functionality thing and mass appeal seems to be a problem for the LENS.
With their magnificent iconic art piece reduced to a comparison with the Swivel Sweeper, no matter how accurate, it must be a crushing blow to those who have long touted the iconic value of the LENS design. Maybe the Maltzan people can name one of those sweeping loops the "Swivel" in honor of Mr. Sullivan's support.
The LENS project has been recognized for what it is by a true expert in the field of infomercial promotional marketing. Something cheaply made, of limited functionality, with unique eye appeal and limited life expectancy.
Not art, just cheap infomercial junk. Finally a valid definition.
I can't wait to see Danner and Curran schmoozing with Sullivan trying to put positive spin on this one.
There could be a back story here. If Leslie Curran is still thinking about running for Mayor, definitely an uphill battle, maybe Mr. Sullivan can give her some pointers. Mayor Foster may want to jump on the band wagon and try to lure Mr. Sullivan into his camp. Just what very iconic art story needs - a sub plot.
If you don't want the "as sold on TV" replacement for the Pier, be sure to get a petition for the Pier Referendum and complete it properly. Information and schedule of events at Stop The Lens.
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Posted by E. Eugene Webb PhD at 8:27 AM