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Let’s fill this town with artists.

CASS Art South Kensington Store

Last week we talked about how successful brands have a single vision that sets them apart from their competition. How they always speak authentically. Tell their stories & remain relevant to their customers. How they engage with local audiences. How they make sure they stay unique, special, & true to themselves.

My aim here is to feature great multi-location brands that are doing just this in a range of sectors. So, earlier this month when I came across a brand whose mission ‘Let’s fill this town with artists’ was emblazoned across its storefront, it naturally piqued my interest!

Standing proudly on High Street Kensington, I discovered Cass Art. Founded by Mark cass in 1984, the art supplies retailer has 14 stores across the UK - Glasgow, Edinburgh, Liverpool, Manchester, Birmingham, Bristol, Brighton & Stratford.

So what’s the background of this great brand?

Well, Mark’s family has a deep connection with the arts. His great uncle, Paul Cassirer, was a prominent art dealer in the 1920s, championing the Impressionist movement & artists like Van Gogh, Degas, Monet, and Cezanne in Europe.

His father Wilfred Cass was the Chairman of Reeves, the world’s oldest paint manufacturer. He co-founded the Cass Sculpture Foundation, an organization with a clear mission: to provide financial support to artists. Their goal? To refine their craft, experiment with novel mediums, & push the boundaries of the avant-garde...

I guess you can see the makings of a strong brand already?

When Mark was just 12 years old, he visited the Reeves paint factory in Enfield. A spark was ignited and 14 years later he took on his first store at Charing Cross Road. An art store for over 100 years was a start, but this was going to be so much more...

Mark connected with emerging artists, photographers, & suppliers to nurture creativity & exposure. Building positive relationships with top suppliers, he aimed to bring the highest quality materials to local communities at the best prices while supporting & developing these art brands like DIAMINE-SPECIALITY INKS LIMITEDLiquitexTom's StudioDaler-RowneyFaber-Castell GroupFabriano GmbH. Sounds promising?

So, what was the store actually like?

I found an immersive retail experience (crafted with Pentagram) with a light, airy ambiance allowing relaxed, unpressured browsing. I loved the branding, & the Cass Art Manifesto really stood out – ‘ART IS FREEDOM Cass Art believes in art. We know the freedom & creative pleasure it brings. So, we want everyone to realise they can do it - and afford it.’

Seven stores feature spaces dedicated to fostering local artistic communities, hosting events like artist talks, demos, workshops, & showcasing limited edition artworks. They collaborate with prominent art brands, galleries, organisations, & institutions like Sky Arts, the National Portrait Gallery & University of the Arts London

This was a brand I could really connect with, how about you?

If you’d like to talk about your brand, your creative marketing or your local marketing why not schedule a FREE 30-minute assessment today here? It could be the best decision you ever make.

Or alternatively read more about Local Marketing on our blog page "Local Thinking': https://www.weareacuity.com/local-thinking-our-blog

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