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Chicago, IL 60601
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Maggie Shepherd

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Emily Doskow

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Leo Burnett and JAT Holdings Leave a Lasting Impression with Petal Paint

Temple Flowers Live Forever Through Innovative Paint Product and Cultural Preservation.

Every day in Sri Lanka, thousands of flowers are placed at the Buddhist temple altars. And every day, they are cleared away, carried out with the waste. That is, until Petal Paint.

Together, JAT Holdings and Leo Burnett introduce a revolutionary, and reverential, new product. Petal Paint harnesses the ancient concept of samsara—the endless cycle of life—to grant sacred temple flowers a higher purpose.

Recognizing an opportunity for cultural innovation, Leo Burnett Sri Lanka conceptualized a plan to collect the discarded flowers for sorting and drying, executed in partnership with Leo Burnett Toronto. Through a state-of-the-art extraction and emulsion process, the flowers’ natural pigments are used to create paint in five natural colors that symbolize those found in the Buddha’s halo: Marigold Orange, Arailya White, Lotus Red, Trumpet Gold, and Pigeonwing Blue.

Every 200 kilograms of flowers collected yields fifty liters of paint, manufactured in five different volumes and packaged in cans with intricately designed labels inspired by the art of temple walls and ceilings.

“This revolutionary idea harnesses the power of creativity to positively impact the world. It’s a wonderful example of a brand giving something back to Sri Lanka’s heritage and culture,” said Mark Tutssel, executive chairman and chief creative officer of Leo Burnett Worldwide. “This innovative work not only invites people to engage in a truly unique way, it also ensures the very important preservation and restoration of sacred temple art.”

JAT returns these purposeful paints to Sri Lanka through donations to local artists—who use them to restore and preserve temple art—and through JAT stores, where visually arresting displays invite devotees to purchase the paint for their own household shrines, extending this creative cycle of life to their own homes. As its next incarnation, JAT Holdings plans to take the Petal Paint concept to countries all over the world.

July 11, 2018