Cole Haan has a striking new fall advertising campaign called “Born in 1928” in honor of the company’s 85 years in business. The ad features portraits four 84- or 85-year-olds: photographer Elliott Erwitt, astronaut Jim Lovell, model China Machado, and writer/heroine Maya Angelou(!).
“They are all vibrant examples of how timelessness and true style are born out of confidence — and that never expires. They are as relevant today as they were in the past, and they all represent various perspectives that we thought would resonate with our consumer.”
This campaign is noteworthy not just because it’s beautiful, but because every single photograph depicts a person in their 80s. Not only that, but it’s surprisingly racially diverse, and predominantly represents people noted for their accomplishments. Nothing about this reads like tokenism–it seems like an actual celebration of age and diversity.
Now if I could just geek out for a moment: how stunning does Maya Angelou look? The other models look great and that’s fine. Not only does she look beautiful, but she looks unbelievably happy. Angelou has always had this unbelievable way of radiating positivity, confidence, and joy, and I’ve never seen a picture of her where that wasn’t apparent. I love the campaign so far, but Angelou steals the show.
The campaign was shot by Daniel Jackson, and the models were styled by Tiina Laakkonen. In addition to print ads, a video campaign will run through November on Cole Haan’s website. Here’s to hoping it includes footage of the models hanging out and gabbing, since Riley added that production was “a bit of a hoot” for the four. A hoot!