Stories - Bracelet, Camera, Reliquary

Agency Network: 
May 2019
BBVA: Stories - Bracelet, Camera, Reliquary
BBVA: Stories - Bracelet, Camera, Reliquary
BBVA: Stories - Bracelet, Camera, Reliquary
BBVA Print Ad - Stories - Bracelet, Camera, Reliquary
BBVA Print Ad - Stories - Bracelet, Camera, Reliquary
BBVA Print Ad - Stories - Bracelet, Camera, Reliquary


Several times when someone needs money, they sell things with a value that, besides being economic, it is sentimental. In order to do so, they resort to pawnbrokers, jewelries and stores where gold is bought by weight, for example. These places usually pay less than the actual worth of things. So, in the bank we recommend that instead of selling and getting rid of those things to request a Personal Loan, since it is more convenient.

Print advertisement created by DDB, Argentina for BBVA, within the category: Finance.


Bracelet: This bracelet is special. It was in the late thirties when my grandmother, who worked as a journalist in one of the most important newspapers in the country, received a call to cover an independent film festival on the shores of the Mediterranean. Upon arrival, she stayed in a three-star hotel whose "biggest attraction" was a poor breakfast that could be ordered at the reception desk before ten in the morning. One of those mornings, her path crossed with one of the nominated directors: a French man with a long mustache who appeared to be in his forties. He offered her an invitation to a private party that the organizers of the event held exclusively for those who had the opportunity of having their names written on the list of possible winners. My grandmother, without hesitation, accepted. This would allow her to be in front of celebrities, the opportunity to get the scoop and above all, maybe some sensationalist note in the privacy that hides the night.

The opposite happened, both forgot their surroundings and stayed talking until dawn. The director offered to accompany my grandmother to the door of her hotel and they both walked along the seashore until they reached the room. The fatigue overcame her, so she rejected in her mind the idea of ​​inviting him in. He politely withdrew, but not before giving her a bracelet that he had on his wrist, whispering in her ear "sooner or later you will have to return it". She closed the door of the room and spent the morning hours unable to sleep, reminiscing every little detail: his face, his way of speaking, his long mustache. It is worth saying, she let herself go with her imagination, even fantasizing about the possibility of a wedding, a family and a home. They never met again.

The film festival was canceled by the beginning of the war between the big powers of Europe, and my grandmother had to return home as soon as possible to take no risks. A detail that my grandmother overlooked all night, she never asked the director for an address where to write, so she lost all traces of him. She spent the following days searching the newspapers for any clue that would help her get any information about her summer fling, but she had no results. Their story even appeared on the front pages of the newspaper, written by herself, with the desire that it would reach the eyes of the man: nothing.

When she met my grandfather, she knew it was time to leave that behind, keeping the bracelet for fifty long years. The day my grandmother met my boyfriend, she could not believe what was in front of her eyes, a man identical to that young and handsome French director, with a very similar mustache and many, many years less, of course. It was at that moment that she told us her most private anecdote, at the same moment that my future husband would tell her the whereabouts of the protagonist of this story, the director, his grandfather. Like her, he spent many days searching for clues and traveled several times to the United States on his vacations, just to find her. His search did not come to positive results either, so he decided to continue with his life and let that attractive journalist become just the most pleasant memory that he treasured in his memory. My grandmother handed me this bracelet in order for me to fulfill what had been whispered to her before the war in her ear "sooner or later, you will have to return it". A week later, knowing that her search finally ended, she rested in the company of her entire family.

Camera: With this camera, my father took his first steps in photography. He got it at a flea market during one of his trips back in the fifties. Transatlantic voyages were not very common, at least not by plane, the way in which he arrived in Italy. The merchant who sold it to him was an old man who had never left his country. He had devoted his whole life to portraying the people of his town with the same camera he was now selling. Already with many years on him, he had decided to leave his town and photography. He wanted to take a trip to the Himalayas and keep only in his head the memories of the trip of his life, his only trip. My father, astonished by the merchant's plans, asked him if he could join him, and the man agreed. It was at that moment, that they became friends and my father became a photographer.

Together they began their journey to the Himalayas. They met the natives of the surrounding areas, where my father photographed an intimate series of spiritual rituals that were performed on the foundations of the mountains, obtaining years later several photographic recognitions. Without realizing it my father made a career as a photographer while his friend enjoyed capturing the moments purely with his eyes.

My father was a lonely man, without family or home, nomadic at the time. It was in Tibet that he decided to build his first home. The first roof he would share with the man who had given him everything, but above all, a purpose in life. They both became very dear people in the community. In one of his many walks photographing the surroundings of the town, my father met the most beautiful woman that his eyes could have ever seen. His first instinct was to take a picture, the second, to invite her to dinner. They began dating, and little by little my father was spending less time in his house, less time with his camera and less time with the merchant who had become his friend. My father was madly in love. Until one day she decided to leave him. Her reasons were clear: my father had left everything for her, he did not work, he lived with what little he had, he had abandoned what made him special. These were very hard days for him, he fell into a depressive spiral in the deepest depth. His friend decided to help him and give a meaning to his life for a second time: he proposed to organize an exhibition, a retrospective of their lives in those parts known by so few.

They sold the house and undertook a new journey on foot that my father took advantage of, to add material. The exhibition was a total success. My father realized that this man standing next to him had given him total happiness and everything he had. It was there when he decided he would never leave him. He founded a photography studio and promised his friend that he would take care of him. In one of his exhibitions, my father met my mother. She was a young university student who fell in love with my father's work and in time, with him. The three of them: the merchant, my mother and my father, continued living together until my parents had me, their only son. My father made it clear to his friend that he would be part of that family and thanks to the commercial success of his work, the three managed to live without any concern. All my life I thought that the merchant was my grandfather, until one day I was told this story, a story that began thanks to this camera.

Reliquary: The first memory I have of this reliquary, is about thirty years ago, my mother showed it to me; she kept it inside her treasure box, as she called it. It originally belonged to my grandmother, it is her and my grandfather in the photos. I think they were taken a few months before they got married, in the only photography studio available by that time, in the small town where they lived. Their story was very particular, they met in their childhood, their families were close. My grandmother's family owned several stores and my grandfather’s had crop fields. They never lacked anything, so it was not strange that my grandmother owned jewelry like this, with delicate inlays. This, however, was the only one she could keep from that time.
Over the years, both my grandparent’s families lost everything. Even so, my mom remembered they were very close to being evicted when she was very young. Despaired, and without having more knowledge than how to work the land, my grandfather started traveling to nearby towns to offer his work. Sometimes he was absent for one or two nights, but there were jobs that required weeks, weeks in which he did not see my mother grow up, weeks in which he did not sleep with the woman he loved. The pay barely sustained them, the first year was very rough. The second, something changed. He no longer was so absent and returned with more money. At first, my grandmother believed that luck was changing for her and her family, but then she began to suspect something.

My grandfather came back in pain, which is very different to returning tired like he used to. It is known how small towns are, many ears, many eyes, and an eagerness to use mouths to transmit whatever is seen or heard. After the alterations that stories usually suffer from being transmitted orally, this was the one that came to my grandmother through her neighbor: my grandfather was gambling, but for himself. Apparently, in one of the many jobs he had, he fought with another worker, words were not enough, and they solved it fighting. My grandfather knocked him down with one blow. The foreman saw him, and far from reprimanding him, he showed him an underworld that my grandfather had never been a part of: clandestine fights.

From then on, my grandfather continued to work with his hands, only he used them differently. My grandmother could not believe what she was hearing and one night she decided to follow him without him knowing, where she found him surrounded by cars, creating an imaginary fighting ring with their lights. In front of him was a man twice his size, a Polish immigrant who was letting him know in the least friendly way possible, that the money they had wagered would stay in his bruised hands. My grandmother was petrified, and her stupor was even greater, when among the bills that made up the prize, was this reliquary, the reliquary that she had been looking for a long time and that my grandfather had sworn he had not seen.
At that moment, the pity she felt for him, left room for anger. She managed to filter through the mass of angry people to get close enough to her husband, who only then realized she was there. She was watching him lose the fight, the money, the reliquary and his pride. It is not known if there was just a moment of silence or if it was that she shouted so loud, that of all the words that were meant only to be listened by him, reached the ears of all: “if you lose, you also lose your family”. My grandmother swore that she never said it or at least she did not think so. Regardless of whether she said it or not, the reality is that my grandfather's face transformed, he was another person. He started throwing punches, so many that the spectators swore that it was not physically possible. He won a lost fight. My grandmother just picked up the reliquary and returned home alone. He was so sore that he could not follow her.
They never talked about it again. My grandmother never let go of this reliquary and my grandfather went back to work to the crop fields, until finally they could buy their own land. Years later, when the story had become a funny anecdote within the family, he always made the same joke: I was more afraid of her than the Polish man, that is why I won.

Don't let your valuables lose value. Personal Loans. Get the money you need.

Advertising Agency: DDB, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Executive Creative Director: Adrián Piattoni, Facundo Varela
Creative Director: Juan Mesz, Fernando Zagales
Copywriter: Haroldo Moreira
3d: Mariano Fernández
Retouch: Víctor Bustos, Dante Rodriguez
Production Company: 300 Dpi / Buenos Aires
Head of Production: Norberto Bodello / 300 Dpi
Producer: Dante Rodriguez / 300 Dpi
Advertiser Supervisor: Santiago Sanguinetti / BBVA
Group Account Director: Maria Rosasco / DDB Argentina
Account Director: María Zicari / DDB Argentina
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kleenex's picture

I like the look of the ad. Not many are going to read all the text.

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