Controversial philosopher to deliver Ogilvy & Mather lecture

Cannes, France, June 8, 2012

Renowned philosopher and author, Alain de Botton will give the second Ogilvy & Inspire lecture at the Cannes International Festival of Creativity 2012 on Thursday 21 June.

Launched last year on the centenary of David Ogilvy’s birth, the annual lecture invites contemporary visionaries to examine inspiration and creativity.  De Botton’s speech will unpick the idea of creativity and discuss why it is one of the most elusive and essential aspects of our lives.

De Botton, whose work is built on a ‘philosophy of everyday life’, will pinpoint the source of our creative fire by sharing the deeper truths he has discovered through close examination of a host of subjects. 

In answer to that need, Alain de Botton said: “It is in books, poems, and painting that we find the confidence to take seriously the feelings in ourselves that we might otherwise never have thought to acknowledge.”

Swiss-born de Botton is a prolific writer and distinguished thinker.  He has published books and papers on every aspect of the human condition including sex, work, religion, status, love and art, with bestsellers in 30 countries.  He founded, and helps run, the ground-breaking School of Life in London, an institution dedicated to a new vision of education.

Miles Young, Worldwide CEO, Ogilvy & Mather, said:  “Now in their second year, our seminars continue the legacy of inspiration fostered by David Ogilvy.  Alain de Botton reflects this legacy as one of the world’s most inspirational, unique thinkers.  Like all great originals, he divides opinion, provokes debate and illuminates what it is to be human.  We are thrilled to have him guest at our second Ogilvy & Inspire seminar.”

Last year’s inaugural speaker was Sir Ken Robinson, author, education reformer and internationally acclaimed speaker on education, creativity and innovation.  His challenging lecture was met with thunderous applause and a standing ovation.

The second Ogilvy & Inspire lecture, on Thursday 21 June at 10:30am in the Theatre Debussy, will form the centerpiece of a range of activities by the agency to celebrate this year’s Cannes Lions.

The lecture will be followed by The Speakers’ Corner – a Q&A session at 11:30am with Alain de Botton in the Cannes Lions on site Press Centre.

For further information, and to request interviews with Alain de Botton, please contact Sarah Owen on 020 7287 2007 or

Ogilvy & Mather
Ogilvy & Mather is one of the largest marketing communications companies in the world. Through its specialty units, the company provides a comprehensive range of marketing services in-house including: brand advertising; direct marketing; interactive; digital and targeted media; brand identity; retail and in-store promotions; trade/event marketing, public relations; CRM and loyalty marketing; fast-track, low-cost delivery; analytics and research capabilities; strategic partnerships; branded content and entertainment; multicultural marketing, and sustainability marketing. Ogilvy & Mather services Fortune Global 500 companies as well as local businesses through its network of more than 450 offices in 120 countries. It is a WPP company (NASDAQ: WPPGY). For more information, visit

Contact: Sarah Owen
Date: June 08, 2012
Office: Cannes