Upfront

Jun
2012

Above and Beyond

In anticipation of the upcoming 2012 Olympic Games, Oakley ignites “Beyond Reason,” a campaign channeling the unshakable and innovative mindset the brand and its athletes embody to forge further into the future of athletic performance and performance eyewear.

As part of the campaign, Oakley is partnering sport champions with artists from around the world to create artwork showcasing the Beyond Reason mentality. Artist Natalie Frank and 2008 Olympic gold medalist decathlete Bryan Clay collaborated on specially-commissioned art. Dramatic, full-scale painted portraits were unveiled at the Beyond Reason launch 100 days before the 2012 Olympic Games in London at Oakley’s Soho store in New York City.

Clay and Frank discussed the points of passion and motivation that fuel Clay’s iconic performances. Frank steadied her sights on representing the defiance and transformation of a champion athlete. “To capture Bryan is to look at what is, and to see what can be,” says Frank. “Working in collaboration with Bryan and Oakley on this gave me my own Beyond Reason opportunity to test my limits.”

These partnerships unite creative minds sharing a passion for exceeding the limits of possibility. In addition to Clay and Frank’s artistic alliance, U.S. beach volleyball player Kerri Walsh, Spanish triathlete Javier Gomez, U.S. sprinter Lolo Jones (collaborating with artist Sarah Olson) and other celebrated Oakley athletes are participating in the Beyond Reason campaign.

Debuting with Beyond Reason is Oakley’s newest performance sunglass RadarLock, built with interchangeable lenses for peak comfort, performance and protection at all levels of competition. “Tonight’s Beyond Reason launch and RadarLock debut celebrates Oakley’s passion to continually push the limits of innovation so our customers and athletes can exceed the limits of possibility,” says Mike Crowell, Oakley VP of marketing and GTM. “Like all in the Oakley family of athletes, Bryan is the best in the world at what he does. Beyond Reason exemplifies his refusal to accept boundaries and his willingness to dream and invent in his training. This allows him to perform at levels few can imagine, and deliver unexpected results.”

Even during the Beyond Reason event, energy thrived, lending attendees the fervid exhilaration reserved for the edge of an extraordinary feat. Fiery performance photos of Oakley athletes, poised on track blocks and suspended in time above hurdles, filled oversized flat screen televisions in the store. More athletes have won more medals while wearing Oakley sunglasses than any other eyewear. That’s a statistic that may play in Clay’s favor, as he looks to make history as the only decathlete to win three Olympic medals. “The Beyond Reason mentality is what drives, inspires and fuels me to push myself every minute of every day to perform at the highest levels,” says Clay. “Working with Oakley and Natalie on this Beyond Reason art gave me an outlet to showcase my mental approach to performance and how I view challenges—not as barriers, but as boundaries that can and will be pushed.”

Clay and Oakley’s family of athletes are positioned to move Beyond Reason, and 20/20 will be watching with the rest of the world as they shape the extremes of athletic performance and sport eyewear with conviction and vision.   

 —Breanna Benz

 

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