The Art Institute of Chicago
Van Gogh BNB
Spend a night in a painting.
The Art Institute of Chicago was preparing a major exhibition dedicated to Vincent van Gogh. But despite having a loyal group of regular visitors, the museum needed to connect with people well beyond the arts community to ensure the exhibition’s success. People who were far more likely to lose hours staring at a screen than a canvas.
What helps people...
As our lives become increasingly online, we place more value than ever on real-life experiences. If you’re a curator at the Art Institute—or for that matter, an ad agency creative director—viewing art is as deep of an experience as there is.
But to get the rest of the world to agree, we wanted to get people to immerse themselves in the life and art of van Gogh.
Which we did quite literally—by recreating his famous Bedroom painting as a physical space. Through a first-of-its-kind partnership with Airbnb, we invited people to book a night’s stay inside this painting-come-to-life, connecting them intimately to van Gogh’s physical, emotional and artistic world.
What started with a single social media post quickly became an international news story. Bookings for the room sold out within minutes and generated enormous interest in the exhibition, with ticket presales up more than double.
By inviting people to step inside a masterpiece, the Art Institute connected with a whole new audience, resulting in the most-visited exhibition in 15 years.