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Remembering famed DDB art director Len Sirowitz

Famed New York art director Len Sirowitz has died. New York in the 1950s and 60s was justly celebrated for its cool and classy design, the commercial equivalent, if you like, of Miles Davis’ music. The ‘Mad Men’ era wasn’t just about three martini lunches and high jinks after work (or at work..) Sirowitz was one of the very best.

Sirowitz (left) will always be synonymous with DDB’s ground-breaking Volkswagen campaigns but his repertoire was much wider than that. We wrote about him way back in 2015, prompted by Adscam’s George Parker, referencing a piece from Dave Dye’s excellent Stuff from the Loft.

Here are some that have surely never been bettered (many more in Dave’s piece, with an interview.)

And the best TV commercial of them all? On a budget of approximately zilch.

3 Comments

  1. Oh dear, so Len has gone off to the big agency in the sky. I never worked with him but did socialize and sit on several award juries with him. I will always insist that the VW “Snow Plow” TV spot is the best commercial ever made. I’ll raise a martini to him tonight.

  2. Beloved cousin. You were a giant in the advertising world, but a patriarch in our family clan. I loved reading this piece about you.

  3. I’m a 92 year old former adman who once hired Len (as a freelance talent) to execute an ad idea for my ad agency that I sent him that won an award from the Kansas City Missouri ad club competition. My client was the Kansas City Missouri Department of Transportation. It was in the middle of a gas crisis back in the 1960s and consisted of a full page black & white ad depicting, in his unique VW style, people standing in line to board a public Bus with a headline that read: “Fill ‘er Up.” He was a great artist and even greater art director. BTW, I still have a copy of the ad stored safely in my garage.

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