This year, Forsman & Bodenfors (F&B) set out to relaunch Steve’s Ice Cream for Dean Foods.
Steve's Ice Cream is often considered to be the brand that invented the artisanal ice cream movement with their creative flavor combinations. Steve’s has a rich heritage as a forerunner in the craft ice cream movement - their original scoop shop in Somerville, Massachusetts opened in 1973 and inspired the Ben & Jerry’s brand, and in recent years their retail pint business pioneered great tasting dairy-free offerings. Over the past decade, the brand had built a passionate fan base that was sad to see the brand fall dormant in recent years, so with this relaunch Steve’s wanted to stay true to their history of inspiring creativity by building crave-worthy product experiences that challenge convention.
It was essential that Steve’s be seen as not just as an ice cream brand with interesting flavors (although this year they launched seven new unique and unexpected varieties inspired by global food culture) but as a brand that engages with our customers and encourages them to seek and experience creativity, whatever the form.
So F&B NY worked with Steve’s to develop more than an advertising campaign that talked about creativity. It went all-in on a commitment to the arts and as an advocate of creativity by supporting real artists who specialize in the unexpected. The agency then allowed the world the opportunity to interact with the artist’s work in real, tangible ways.
The centerpiece of the relaunch was the brand’s partnership with artist Dan Lam and the Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA) in Boston, to create a fully interactive art exhibit that took over the museum’s harbor-facing facade.
Over the course of the summer, Steve’s partnership with Lam and the collaboration with the ICA brought her colorful, gloopy, often oozing sculptures to life on a scale that Lam hadn’t been able to execute before. Rather than asking viewers to stand back and look at her work, the exhibit encouraged audiences to touch and play with her pieces, which are crafted with unexpected textures, colors, and materials not usually found in the art world. And of course, copious free samples of some of Steve’s most creative flavors were served.
Agency Forsman & Bodenfors New York Client Steve’s Ice cream Forsman & Bodenfors Creative: Cerra Buckholz Creative: Jordan Chouteau Creative: Ryan Gifford Creative: Devin McGillivary Creative: Joesephine “Jojo” Kim Producer: Amber Wimmer Producer: Kim Stephens Business Affairs: Matt Friday Business Affairs: Denise Klapp Strategy: Ted Florea Strategy: Rita Dory Strategy: Pooja Kaka Business Leadership: Steve McCall Business Leadership: Michael Levitt ARTIST Dan Lam ARTIST ENGAGEMENT
Arch Enemy Arts Director: Patrick Shillen PRODUCTION CO Production Co Name: Ghost Experiential Production Leads: Jason Scharf, Jonathan Waks Executive Producer: Neely Lisk Fabrication: Standard Transmission Productions PRODUCTION / VIDEO / PHOTO / EDITORIAL / FINISHING CO Production Company: The Libbey Brothers EVENT PARTNER Institute of Contemporary Arts Boston (ICA)