Published 22.03.2024  •  2 min read

An iconic new campaign for Ireland’s National Theatre

Éadaoinn Headshot Éadaoin


The Abbey Theatre’s production of Molière’s Tartuffe tells the story of a hypocrite; a fraud who infiltrates a family’s home under the guise of being a devout Christian. Under Caitríona McLaughlin’s direction, Frank McGuinness’s retelling of this 1664 dramatic comedy brings the ever-relevant themes of hypocrisy and deception into a contemporary context. We worked closely with The Abbey to design a campaign where deception was expressed in a simple and effective way.


Snippets of the design process


Throughout the design process we brought several different elements of the production into consideration:

1 – Tartuffe is a satire, full of comedy that also carries with it a serious undertone, tackling themes that are very relevant today. It was important that we balanced the comedic with the serious and conveyed the correct tone.


2 – The Abbey’s version of Tartuffe blurs the lines between old and new, integrating social media posts and techno music with baroque architecture and rhyming couplets. We needed to reflect this blend of timelines in the campaign.


3 – Designing a campaign for a theatrical production is something that brings huge opportunity for artistic expression. However the Abbey is the National Theatre of Ireland, and must reflect the needs of a modern national theatre, having a responsibility to appeal to a wide audience and reflect Ireland’s contemporary experiences. We needed to create something that was expressive while also being accessible.


We took photographs of Ryan Donaldson’s depiction of Tartuffe (photos by Finn Richards) and transformed them into graphic representations of deception and mischief


Some elements from the Tartuffe campaign


These considerations formed a vibrant, contemporary image that was flexible and adaptable, working across a myriad of platforms. From social media to massive billboards, Tartuffe’s mischievous face became recognisable across the country.

‘The Abbey’s Tartuffe was both a progressive expression of the art form and an entertaining night out for all. The brief was full of these intriguing contrasts, and our campaign image had to find the right balance.’

– Brian Heffernan, Director of aad

Tartuffe is on national tour from April 12th to May 13th.
Get tickets at