Matt Edwards & Wes Phelan are the South African Creative Director duo responsible for one of the most awarded campaigns of 2017: Original is Never Finished for adidas Originals. Throughout the year, the duo created over 50 pieces of content for adidas, including the seventh most-watched ad on YouTube. The campaign was also awarded the inaugural Grand Prix awarded in the new Music Entertainment category at Cannes in 2017, picked up a Grand Clio in Film and won a Gold Global Effie.
Their body of work for the brand has been recognized at every major international award show, including the One Show, D&AD, Cannes Lions, AICP, Ciclope Festival, LIA’s and more. Since the pair began working for the brand, adidas Originals global sales for lifestyle products has increased by an unheard of 45 percent. The brand has also overtaken one-time competitor Under Armour while rising to the top of its category.
By the end of 2017, this team of polymaths has collaborated with today’s leading cultural influencers including Pharrell Williams, Snoop Dogg, 21 Savage, Young Thugg, Playboi Carti, Pusha T, Stormzy, David Beckham, Rita Ora, Joey Badass, Damian Lillard, Andrea Pirlo, David Villa, Desiigner, Dua Lipa, Kareem Abdul Jabbar, A$ap Ferg, Brandon Ingram, Dev Hynes, James Harden and Kendall Jenner to name a few.
Since moving to New York in 2013, they have been recognized across the industry for their work, most notably as Adweek’s 2017 “Creative100,” where Matt and Wes were recognized as two of the top 22 creative directors “who are completely reimagining what’s possible”. They have also been featured in the Cannes Game Changers book and exhibition, celebrating 60 years of advertising that has transformed the landscape of the creative industries, and have been invited to be on the juries for NY Festivals, Kyoorius Awards (India), Loeries and One Show jury. They also helped Johannes Leonardo breakthrough onto the AdAge A-List, where they were ranked 4th best agency in North America.
Despite the number of local and international accolades across virtually every industry award show, they are foremost committed to winning hearts, rather than trophies. They are continuously striving to connect the audience with the brand in a unique and memorable way.