Thomas KNUEWER

Executive Creative Director | KOLLE REBBE

I am an Executive Creative Director at Kolle Rebbe in Hamburg, Germany, and love ideas that are more than advertising. I created a melting board game, a B2B metasearch engine, a premature typeface, a Twitch live game show and a human Currywurst. My clients include DAZN, Amazon, Globus, Netflix and Microsoft. I believe that the best ideas emerge when listening to Death Metal. Also, it's never too late to level up another character. My career started with Jung von Matt/Alster in Hamburg after studying graphic design at the University of Applied Sciences in Münster. My work received more than 100 national and international awards and merits, including ADC (Germany, Europe, Global), Eurobest, Cannes Lions, One Show, D&AD, LIA, Clio and New York Festival. I'm an active Member of the Art Director's Club Germany and have been appointed to judge at the Webby Awards, Lovie Award, ADC Germany, PIAF and Mobius Awards.

questionnaire

What was your very first job? What does it feel like to look back at it now? 

My first job was Junior Art Director at Jung von Matt/Alster in Hamburg. An intensive time full of late nights, wild ideation and getting to know crazily talented and ambitious people – felt like working on the fast lane. I learned a lot – for work and for life.

Please describe, in your own words, what your current job is and what work it entails.

My current job as Executive Creative Director at Kolle Rebbe has two main focuses: 1. Helping the different teams within the agency with key clients and new business 2. Helping to develop the agency’s profile of the future – its culture, ways of working together and innovative power.

How did you discover that the creative world is right for you? Was there a time in your life that you credit to this discovery? Which train of events did bring you to where you are today?

I've always been the weird kid who scribbled odd things on walls, streets, books and notebooks. When we were supposed to draw a dog in elementary school, mine had a jetpack. When we were supposed to make up a story, mine played on a planet of cheese. After school, when it came to what kind of job would make sense for us, I wasn't thinking about a job, I was thinking about an opportunity to develop ideas. No matter where, no matter how. Ideas, art and design have always fascinated me more than anything else.  That hasn't changed until today.

In your constantly growing and expanding industry, how and where do you usually find inspiration to keep your work fresh, innovative and relevant?

Everywhere, you just have to keep your eyes open. Inspiration is not something that only exists in selected places. The instructions for the washing machine can be just as inspiring as a visit to a museum, if you pay attention to the right things - or if you have the necessary openness. It's often the little things that inspire.  And the connections you make. There is inspiration not only at the hottest creative festivals, but everywhere and in everything.

If you had to pick one piece of work or project that you are most proud of, especially for the creative work and innovation it required rather than its recognition or industry success, what would it be?

A few years ago I developed a board game for a science magazine for children that drew attention to global warming. The special thing about it was that the game itself melted. You had to take little polar bears to the safe mainland before the floes of real ice melted. The game was used as teaching material at several German schools and showed children the consequences of global warming in a playful way.

jury

Creative Director | STUDIO AHIRA
Head of Inhouse Agency | E. BREUNINGER
Executive Creative Director | JUNG VON MATT
Marketing Director | STRELLSON
Head of TV | HAVAS WORLDWIDE
Prod Operations Mngr. I OLIVER AGENCY
Managing Creative Director | HAVAS MUNICH
Sen. Art Director | DONKEY COMMUNICATION
Managing Director | BEHIND THE SCENES
Senior Creative | AKQA
Head of Art Buying | JUNG VON MATT
Senior Creative | BBDO
Creative Director for Mercedes-Benz | ANTONI
Head of Creative Services | ESCADA
Founder | BUREAU BRAUNE
Head of Integrated Marketing | HUGO BOSS
CEO | AUBADE
Global Marketing Director | BORGWARD
Executive Creative Director | THJNK
Sr Director Communications | LUFTHANSA
Creative Director | GRABARZ & PARTNER
Senior Creative | INNOCEAN
Creative Director | LUKAS LINDEMANN ROSINSKI
Senior Creative | INNOCEAN
Brand Experience & Brand Design Strategist | VOLKSWAGEN
Senior Creative | SERVICE PLAN
Head of Production | ABOUT YOU
Head of Art Buying | OGILVY & MATHER
Art Director | WORMLAND
Lead Producer | HAVAS
CEO | HESSNATURE
Executive Creative Director | WUNDERMAN
Digital Director | PWC
Creative Director | MUTABOR DESIGN
Head of TV | SELECTWORLD
ECD | PAHNKE MARKENMACHEREI
Executive Creative Director | ANTONI
Creative Head & Publisher | MFK PUBLISHING
Creative Director | KALTES KLARES WASSER
Creative Director | KOLLE REBBE
Exec. Prod. & Head of moving images | ANTONI GMBH
Art Buyer | OTTO
MD & partner | SERVICEPLAN Berlin
Creative Director | JVM
Creative Director | METAPULSE
Senior Creative Manager | SERVICE PLAN
Creative Director | SERVICE PLAN
Executive Creative Director | ANOMALY
Executive Creative Director | ACHTUNG
Group Creative Director | KOLLE REBBE
Director Brand Strategy | VOLKSWAGEN
Sr. Director Creative | UNIVERSAL MUSIC
Advertising Manager | FERRERO
Executive Creative Director | LA RED
Creative Director | HONEY
Executive Producer | PAHNKE MARKENMACHEREI
Sr. Art Dir | LUKAS LINDEMANN ROSINSKI
ECD | ZHOI HY CREATIVE STUDIO
Creative Director | SELECTWORLD
Creative Director | BB 235
Creative Director | DDB BERLIN
Creative Director
Brand Director | HIGHSNOBIETY
CMO | WORMLAND
Creative Director | WE-ARE-OPEN
Creative Director | GGH MULLENLOWE
Creative Director | KEMMLER KEMMLER
Creative Head Marketing | S. OLIVER
Executive Creative Director | KOLLE REBBE
Head of Art Buying | PRODIGIOUS
Head of Art Buying | TRACK
Founder | CFS KRUG
Creative Director
Senior Art Director | FISCHER APPELT
Art Director | AEYDE
Brand Strategist & Mktg | ANDREAS MURKUDIS
Creative Director | MARIO LOMBARDO
Creative Director | RIEGG & PARTNER
Creative Director | ANOMALY
CCO | GREY
Creative Dir. | Deutsche Fussball Liga
Creative Director | MINI - BMW GROUP
Creative & Art Director | INNOCEAN
Head of Brand Marketing | MYKITA
Senior Art Buyer | FCB Hamburg
Sen. Art Director | WORMLAND
Creative Director | ÜBERGROUND
Marketing Director | ELECTROLUX
Head of art buying | SCHOLZ & FRIENDS
Creative Director |
COO & Executive Producer | KURZGESAGT
VP Marketing Director | LILIUM
Creative Arts Consultant | HEIMAT
Art Producer
Creative Director | GRABARZ & PARTNER
Head of Agency Producing | WIRZ
Head of TV & FILM | JUNG VON MATT
Creative Director | MYTHERESA
Executive Creative Director | THJNK
Executive Creative Director | WIRZ
Creative Director | KOLLE REBBE
Creative Director | KOLLE REBBE
CCO | PAHNKE MARKENMACHEREI
Head of Marketing | ZINO DAVIDOFF
Managing Director | ROSENDAHL BERLIN
Executive Creative Director | STRAIGHT
Creative Director | STUDIO CHRISTIAN RUESS
Executive Creative Director | RUSKA MARTIN
Creative Director
Executive Creative Director | TERRITORY
CD & Founder | DONALD SCHNEIDER STUDIO
Director | SCHOBER DESIGN
Chief Creative Officer Germany | HAVAS
Head of Art Buying | PHILIPP UND KEUNTJE
Brand Marketing Mngr. | MYKITA
Managing Director | PRISM
Art Buyer | FREIESARTBUYING
ECD | SERVICE PLAN
Creative Director | OLIVER AGENCY
Marketing Dir. & Art Buyer | WORMLAND
Creative Director | CONDENAST
Creative Director | HONEY
Senior Art Dir.| DONKEY COMMUNICATION
Creative Director | GRABARZ & PARTNER
Creative Director | FRANCES UCKERMANN
Head of TV | JUNG VON MATT
Head of Brand Marketing | EBAY
Lead Creative | APPLE
Senior Art Buyer | GRABARZ & PARTNER
Marketing & Communication Advisor
Creative Director Art | ÜBERGROUND
Director of Photography | LOVED
Head of Art Buying | HEIMAT
Executive Creative Director | HEIMAT
Executive Creative Director | SERVICE PLAN
Head of Marketing | SIEMENS
Owner/Partner | SOLOMON WINTER
Art Buyer | TRACK
Hd. of Creat. Concept & Com. | THOMAS SABO
Creative Director | OTTO
Managing Director | THJNK