Everyone talks about creativity these days, but not so many people genuinely invest in it. So I’ve always been inspired by PizzaExpress’ commitment to contemporary art.
Over the past 40 years, it has supported a huge number of artists by buying their work and hanging it in its restaurants. It also set up the Prospects art prize which, quite apart from the prize money, has helped to promote some of the lesser-known young artists working in Britain today.
Being asked by PizzaExpress to create its new brand identity has therefore been a great opportunity to refresh the sources of my inspiration, as it were. As a result of this project, we’ve created new menus for its restaurants that change on a seasonal basis – enabling us to work with a terrific range of artists and illustrators.
We’ve used pieces from Prospects finalists, asked a digital artist and an illustrator to ‘interpret’ an evening’s jazz at PizzaExpress in Soho and, most recently, worked with Sara Fanelli to immortalise four classic pizzas.
I love the idea of someone being inspired to get involved in art or become more creative as a result of eating in PizzaExpress. It would bring the whole process full circle.