Gap Ads Have Finally Gotten Interesting

Photo: Courtesy of Gap.
Whether crafting the perfect pair of straight-fit jeans, lightweight utilitarian jackets, or variations on the striped top, Gap has stayed true to its all-American aesthetic since day one. But, promoting those signature pieces in a normcore-flooded market has proven to be difficult. This latest advertising outing brings the one-two punch of surrealism and nostalgia, and finally it seems like the brand is getting somewhere.

Photographed by Tierney Gearon and styled by Camilla Nickerson, the campaign updates Gap's "Dress Normal" ads from last fall with a decidedly fashion-forward bent. There are no famous actors or household names, only models captured in typical summertime scenarios, but each with an off-kilter twist. A girl rides her bike laying horizontally on the grass. Two guys seem unperturbed by the fact that they're entirely wrapped up in a hose. A couple stands on the corner drenched in rain. A "hope he sees me" ad is juxtaposed against a "forget him" counterpart, but each image pushes the idea that your clothes can help you live the way you want.

Over the past several seasons, Gap has struggled to find its footing, losing creative director Rebekka Bay and attempting a series of brand reinventions. After "Dress Normal" proved to be lackluster — despite featuring actors like Anjelica Huston, Elisabeth Moss, and Jena Malone — the brand recently swung in the opposite direction, declaring that "Spring Is Weird" in a campaign starring comedian Jenny Slate.
Although the new lineup does keep former creative director Rebekka Bay's tagline, it's proof that dressing normal doesn't mean you can't be a little bit strange at the same time. We reached out to Gap for explanation about the text itself (What is the brand trying to say with these "resolutions"?) and will update accordingly. In the meantime, let us know what you think about Gap's latest makeover in the comments. 
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