Wednesday, 16th November, 2016: Wilson Hartnell, one of Ireland’s leading communications agencies, has launched the WH Culture Collective. Developed to bolster the agency’s expertise, insight and experience across multiple sectors, the WH Culture Collective represents a major milestone in the company’s continued development.

Featuring some of Ireland’s most prominent figures from a number of different sectors, the WH Culture Collective will offer a unique perspective for many brands wishing to drive cultural relevancy in order to more deeply connect with consumers in the most powerful and engaging ways. The WH Culture Collective includes;

• Paul O’ Connell – Sport
• Roz Purcell – Food & Digital Media
• Maser – Arts
• Angela Dorgan – Music
• Jonathan McCrea – Technology, Medicine & Science

Speaking at the launch, Brian Bell, CEO Wilson Hartnell said; “We’re really proud and excited today to introduce our inaugural Culture Collective which includes Sporting legend Paul O’Connell, leading artist Maser, music visionary Angela Dorgan, food blogger Roz Purcell and technology, medicine and science expert Jonathan McCrea.

For over four decades, Wilson Hartnell has been involved in some of Ireland’s biggest cultural occasions and experiences. As an agency, we are constantly pushing forward, adding new skills, talent and experience to the company. We believe that having regular access to such a highly-talented group of cultural thought leaders will enable us to uniquely keep our fingers on the pulse of cultural change in Ireland and help us and our clients to create authentic brand conversations and experiences that are culturally relevant and therefore welcome, not imposed”, continued Bell.

For decades, brands have been playing their part in enhancing cultural experiences for consumers. The brands that win today are those that create and support initiatives and activities that foster real connections, which build trust and have meaning for consumers.

Paul O’Connell, former Munster and Irish rugby player, said “Interaction with brands has been part and parcel of sport for some time. This involvement is now extending beyond the traditional areas of performance sport into grassroots. I believe this can benefit the future development of Irish sporting talent whilst providing opportunities for brands to engage with an even wider sporting audience. It is interesting as a former player and huge follower of sport to see and hopefully play a part in this evolution.”

Leading artist Maser said, “Art plays such a key role in connecting people in our society and brands recognise the power that an image can have to convey a point of view or communicate an emotion. I am looking forward to working with the team at Wilson Hartnell as they continue to use art to bring brands and moments to life for consumers.”

Food Blogger, Roz Purcell; “As is widely known, I am so passionate about food. It is such a big part of Irish culture. It’s fair to say, we are a nation of foodies and food infusions and collaboration has opened up a wealth of possibilities for all types of brands. Wilson Hartnell has a growing food client base and I’m excited to explore opportunities for WH’s clients into the future”.

The WH Culture Collective will provide independent thought, specialist knowledge, insight and a fresh perspective into the latest trends in Irish culture. Their expert insights will help inform the agency’s thinking with real life experience as it continues to bridge the gap between culture and brand on behalf of its clients.

Angela Dorgan, CEO, First Music Contact said; “Music permeates all aspects of culture and indeed life. It’s a huge passion point for consumers and regardless of whether a brand has a music programme in place or not, I’ve no doubt that it is still a significant platform for brands as they attempt to establish meaningful connections with consumers”.

Jonathan McCrea, broadcaster and communications consultant specialising in science, medicine and technology said, “Brands have been using scientific research and technology to communicate their products to the public. This can be a dangerous business if you underestimate the public or oversell the science. I have been working with Wilson Hartnell over the last couple of years to help companies in the science, medical and technology sector communicate their messages effectively and responsibly in this fast-changing environment.”Paul O’Connell is an iconic figure, respected in and beyond the Rugby world and widely regarded as one of sport’s finest ambassadors.

Ambassadors Biographies:

Paul O’Connell

His rugby achievements are too numerous to mention, but include being Ireland’s third most-capped player of all time (108 caps, 28 as Captain); Triple Crown wins in 2006, 2007 and 2009; Six Nations Grand Slam in 2009; back-to-back Championship honours in 2014 and 2015; British and Irish Lions tours to New Zealand (2005), South Africa (2009) when he was honoured with the captaincy and Australia (2013); participation in four Rugby World Cups; thirteenth most-capped international in Rugby Union history; 178 appearances during his 15-year career at Munster, with European Heineken Cup and Celtic League / Pro 12 honours as well as captaining the legendary side from 2007 to 2015.

Renowned as one of the best second rows and among the finest captains in world rugby, Paul’s inspirational leadership on the pitch has been mirrored by his dedication to public causes. He was awarded the Freedom of Limerick City in 2012 in recognition of his philanthropic work as a community leader in his native city and in the service of many charitable and voluntary causes at home and abroad in areas such as Special Olympics, culture and education.

He regularly appears on television and radio and is actively followed on social media platforms. His is an authentic and authoritative voice that engenders respect and genuine engagement across many audiences.

Roz Purcell

Roz Purcell is an Irish model, food blogger, media personality and former Miss Universe Ireland.

First coming to national prominence for her modelling work, Roz placed in the top 10 for the Miss Universe 2010 competition.

She has since successfully launched a stellar media career which includes a winning role on Come Dine with Me Ireland, a guest chef appearance on TV3’s the Restaurant, and a stint as a Celebrity Bainisteor on RTE.

But it’s her passion for healthy food and lifestyle that has earned her thousands of followers on social media in recent years. Her Natural Born Feeder food blog shows how to create healthy but accessible dishes, and has a legion of dedicated fans, which led to the launch of Roz’ best-selling cookbook this year.

Roz’ dedication to building innovative social media platforms has also seen her rise to prominence as one of the leading social media stars in Ireland.

Maser is an artist originally from Ireland, now living in London, following a two-year artist residency in the US.

Most recently, Maser opened his solo show Foreign Language at Graphic Studio Gallery in Dublin. This comes on the back of his show Orbiting on the Periphery at Lazarides Gallery in London (the gallery that famously represented Banksy), and a large installation at the Palais de Tokyo gallery in Paris.

While in the US, Maser painted large scale murals in his distinctive style across a number of states including Washington DC, Madison Wisconsin and Arkansas. He also crossed the border into Canada where he installed the biggest one-man mural in the whole country, located in Montreal.

Maser hit the headlines back in Dublin earlier this year when he painted the now infamous Repeal the 8th mural in Temple Bar landing him on the cover of Irish Arts magazine as a result.

Maser’s career began in 1995 when he began painting graffiti on the streets of Dublin, where he soon earned the respect of other graffiti artists in Ireland and throughout Europe for his unique abstracted style.

After studying Visual Communication at Art School in his home city, he went on to establish himself as one of Ireland’s leading visual artist working in the urban environment.

His early work, such as the ‘They Are Us’ Project (2010) was strongly influenced by typography, letterforms and sign painting, but his style gradually began to transition towards graphic representation and geometric abstraction. His works demonstrate unassuming techniques emphasising simplicity of form. In recent years he has explored new mediums beyond walls including canvas, video and large scale 3D installations.

Maser’s passion and drive has awarded him the opportunity to paint walls across many countries, including; Ireland, UK, Austria, Germany, Denmark, France, Netherlands, Belgium, Czech Republic, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and the United States. His work has also been exhibited at IFPDA Print Fair 2014, New York, Ink Miami and Expo Chicago.

His large scale mural work and his collaborations with artists such as musician Damien Dempsey, TED prize winner – JR, Connor Harrington, and Fintan Magee have won him notoriety not only in the graffiti world, but also have helped establish him in the contemporary art world.

Jonathan McCrea

Jonathan McCrea is a multi-award-winning TV and radio broadcaster and founder of Whipsmart Media, a communications consultancy for the science, medical, pharmaceutical and technology sectors.
He frequently gives keynotes on future technologies and the art of effective communication and recently led a national media training programme for Science Foundation Ireland’s leading researchers.
In 2010, Jonathan created Futureproof, Newstalk’s flagship science programme that has travelled the globe from French Guiana to the Arctic Circle. The show has won five gold awards at the PPI National Radio Awards in the six years it has been on air, most recently winning the 2016 PPI Best Specialist Speech award.

Jonathan’s television career has seen him present everything from big-budget quiz shows (such as The Lie for TV3) to national science series (The Science Squad and 10 Things To Know for RTE1). In January next year, TV3 viewers will get to see Jonathan’s new science travel show that journeys from Ukraine to the Galapagos and from China to Yellowstone Park to investigate how new technologies will shape our future.

In 2015, Jonathan founded SCI:COM, Ireland’s largest science communications conference, which returns to Dublin this December. Through Whipsmart Media, Jonathan has provided training and consultancy services for various organisations in the sci/med/tech sectors including pharmaceutical companies, tech startups, energy providers and charitable organisations.

Jonathan has written on science and technology for the Irish Times and the Irish Independent and is currently writing his first book, Say that Again: The Science of Powerful Communication.

Angela Dorgan

Cork woman Angela Dorgan is the CEO of First Music Contact (FMC), the Arts Council funded national resource organization for musicians which run the Irish Music Export Office, Music From Ireland, the online music portal BreakingTunes and the annual music industry showcase Hard Working Class Heroes festival.

Angela has a Masters Degree in Sociology from UCC and believes that Arts and Culture are an essential part of the life of every citizen. Angela has contributed regularly to RTE radio arts show Arena and was briefly a reporter for RTE1 TV’s The Works. She is also on the board for the National Campaign for the Arts in Ireland and is a founder member of the Global Music Exporters Exchange . She also played the drums. Badly. (her words)

Music and Arts are a big part of Angela’s Dorgan life and in her role at FMC she is instrumental in helping up and coming Irish bands by providing a free information and advice resource for musicians at any level, as well as an infrastructure to develop their careers and international reach.