For the past few months – and this is something we’re incredibly proud of given how relatively young we still are as an agency – we’ve been working with the National Gallery to recreate two of Caravaggio’s most famous paintings.

The aim was to promote the Gallery’s current ‘Beyond Caravaggio‘ exhibition and, having worked on installations, stunts and other creative public relations campaigns in the past, jumped at the chance to work with such a cultural institution.

But first, some background…

In the small town of Avigliano, southern Italy, on the last Sunday of every August, a festival called ‘Quadri Plastici’ enraptures visitors and residents.

Quadri Plastici, which translates to ‘plastic painting’, is a practise dating back more than 100 years, in which performers recreate artwork – using models, lights, props, box frames and music to “provide viewers with a visually striking new way to view contemporary work inspired by the artist”.

The group recently performed on Italia’s Got Talent – it’s here we first became aware of Quadri Plastici:

After months of communication, preparation and meetings, last Friday (28th October), we helped to bring the group’s incredible brand of living art to Trafalgar Square, right outside the Gallery.

What happened next…

As the helpful evening darkness crept in, dozens of performers, make-up artists, set builders, tailors and seamstresses put on a series of performances that captured both media and public interest, recreating ‘The Taking of Christ’ and ‘Salome receives the Head of John the Baptist’ in a way not previously seen outside of Italy.

The Times, Telegraph, BBC and many other outlets – including a large number of Italian titles – picked up on the story, and each performance was watched by hundreds.

Here’s the BBC’s coverage of the performances:

Here are the final images. Originals – The Taking of Christ and Salome receives the Head of John the Baptist:

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We’ll have a campaign video ready shortly that I’ll embed here that includes some great behind the scenes shots, as well as interviews with key individuals.

(And here’s how many people it takes to make something like this happen – I’m hidden away at the back…!)

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