“Originality is dead,” thus saith modern-day philosophers. All’s been said, all’s been done. All possible paintings have been painted, songs written, ideas devised - as young professionals, they tell us, there’s nothing original left to contribute.
Yet our generation, ironically, prides itself on originality. And that’s where the concept of “meta” comes in. “Meta” is defined by UrbanDictionary as “a term, especially in art, used to characterize something that is characteristically self-referential.” This definition is vague, so let’s put it into context. Glimpse Collective’s latest campaign — or anti-campaign — exemplifies exactly what “meta” means.
This campaign is a nod to the 9-5 millennial worker’s stereotypical work ethic, punctuated by procrastination and cat videos. Procatinator.com is dedicated to this exact thing. Like cat videos cut through the clutter of office monotony, this 68-piece cat splash throughout the UK subway tunnels distracted passersby from their commutes. It’s absurd. It’s seemingly nonsensical. It caught your eye, didn’t it?
But the thing is, it’s still an ad. It’s an ad about how ads are boring. This convoluted reach for your attention is the definition of meta.
Not only that, but this anti-ad is actually an advertisement for Battersea Animal Rescue. And whether it convinces you to bring home a cat or not, you noticed the cats while waiting for the train. And that’s all Glimpse wanted you to do.
“Originality is dead,” thus saith modern-day philosophers. But they’re wrong; it’s merely evolved.