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ADC-Festival 2018: Ein Blick in die Zukunft © Holde Schneider

ADC Festival 2018 looks towards the future

Dörte Spengler-Ahrens, Chair of ADC Hamburg's chapter talks to Hamburg News about novelties at ADC 2018

The Arts Director Festival gets underway in Hamburg from April 16-19, 2018 under the theme “Feed your Creativity” which will also feature an exhibition, the newly-created Open Space, a parallel congress and the ADC Awards Show focusing on trends, visions and new ideas.

Hamburg News: Mrs Spengler-Ahrens, this year’s ADC Festival will focus on the interaction between new ideas and technology. Why is this approach being taken?

Spengler-Ahrens: It is imperative for creativity and technology to work closely together in our digital era. Technological progress has reached our brains! Texts will soon be written per thought processes. Yet a digital revolution must be intuitively controlled. But there are no artificially produced ideas. Creative genius is not programmable. That is what’s at stake during our ADC Congress – highlighting the interface between creation and innovation. The speakers at our congress are looking towards the future. And that is quite exciting, according to Karel Golta Shem Magnezi and Catharina van Delden.

Hamburg News: You mentioned the speakers at the congress. Which speakers should visitors not miss?

Spengler-Ahrens: The most creative minds from Germany and all over the world will be guests at the ADC with their projects. My highlights include Steve Vranakis, Worldwide Creative Officer at Google and President of D&AD, Pascal Finette, Vice President of the Startup Solutions Group, who will explain the future to us. Under no circumstances will I miss Moran Cerf, a Professor of Neurosciences and Business at the Kellogg School of Management, who will share not only new scientific findings about our consumer behaviour with us, but will also explain the significance of the digital transformation for the creative sector. Put in a nutshell, he will explain how us consumers can be “hacked”.

Hamburg News: Is the Open Space a novelty at the ADC Festival?

Spengler-Ahrens: Correct. We have an extra stage on the site of the festival for the first time. That means double input for those craving creativity. We are negotiating big visions during the ADC Congress. However, things are very down-to-earth in the new Open Space with workshops, panels and rounds of discussion about controversial issues and with strong opinions. This is where theory becomes practical. And best of all, Open Space is free for everyone.

Hamburg News: And what can visitors to the festival expect at the EXPO?

Spengler-Ahrens: The EXPO is our creative fair. Select top agencies are the ideal, professional launching pad for agencies and young creative people. Freelancers and professionals can also make contacts there and secure new job opportunities. Apart from speed recruiting and checking application folders, there will be a Silpion Kicker Cup on Thursday. The top creative people can battle it out at table soccer. The winning team can look forward to tickets for the Awards Show and the After Show Party.
Interview by: Yvonne Scheller

Dörte Spengler-Ahrens

Dörte Spengler-Ahrens, 47, hails from Hamburg and counts among Europe’s best advertisers and has won many national and international awards. She has been a member of management at Jung von Matt for over 15 years and is partner and Managing Director of Jung von Matt/SAGA. As a board member of the Art Directors Club (ADC) e.V., Spengler-Ahrens is responsible for congresses and seminars and has lobbied to bring the annual ADC Festival to Hamburg where it has been staged since 2013 after being held initially in Berlin and later in Frankfurt.

Art Directors Club

The Art Directors Club für Deutschland (ADC) e. V. is an alliance of over 700 leading creative minds in the communications sector. The club counts famous designers, journalists, architects, scenographers, photographers, illustrators, directors, composers, producers, digital media specialist and advertisers among it’s members. The ADC views itself as a benchmark for excellence marked by outstanding communications. The club hosts contests, congresses, seminars, lectures, events, B2B events and issues various publications. More information can be found on

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