A graffiti artist who turned his life around thanks to his unique talent, has created a striking work of art in Manchester this week (Thursday, 18th February) as part of a project with The Body Shop to mark its 40th anniversary.

Krek, also known as Thomas Dolan, has had his work exhibited across Europe and the USA, and has been working at a site on the corner of Tib and Thomas Street to create the stunning piece of art as his creative expression of The Body Shop’s brand commitment Enrich Not Exploit.

The Body Shop has always believed that business can be a force for good and change, a belief which is as strong today as it was when the business began back in 1976. The Enrich Not Exploit Commitment embraces the ethical principles from which The Body Shop was built, and supports its aim to be the world’s most ethical and sustainable global business.

Krek said it was an interesting way to get across such an important message to the city, and he enjoyed the challenge.

“I really hope everyone in Manchester is inspired by my work alongside The Body Shop, and can see that even small changes can make a big difference. I have really enjoyed taking part in this project and it has added a splash of colour to this part of the city, and I was really inspired by what they are doing. My work has already got a lot of attention and I’m sure it will make a lot of people stop and think about the message. I really hope children too will be able to see how using their skills creatively can have such a positive impact on their own lives, and those around them,” he said.

Jeremy Schwartz, Chairman and CEO of The Body Shop, said: “The Body Shop has always pioneered new ways of thinking, acting and speaking out as a company.  Our ground­breaking campaigns were ahead of their time and have changed laws. Today for all of us, the greatest challenges lie ahead and The Body Shop’s 40th anniversary is the perfect time to reassert our aim for leadership in ethical business. For us, being truly sustainable means shaping our business to work in line with the planet’s natural systems so they can replenish and restore themselves. With our Commitment we’re challenging ourselves to go further than we’ve ever gone before to make a real, sustainable and positive difference. We have set ourselves a significant goal to be the world’s most  ethical and truly sustainable global business.”   

The Body Shop’s Enrich Not Exploit Commitment is for it to be the world’s most ethical and sustainable global business, underpinned by an extensive programme of global activity and measurable targets that touches all areas of the business.

The artwork also marks the launch of The Body Shop school art project in the city which encourages children to get creative and express what Enrich Not Exploit means to them.

Budding artists in Years 7 to 11 are now invited to take part in their own project to create Enrich Not Exploit artwork which could win £1,000 prize money for their school to spend on anything that will enrich the lives of its pupils, and a London weekend break for them  and their family.  

Sam  Thomson,  Director  of  Brand  &  Corporate  Responsibility  Director  for  The  Body  Shop  urged  teachers, pupils and schools to get involved.

“With the launch of the schools project we want as many youngsters to get involved as possible. 2016 is the 40th anniversary of The Body Shop, and as part of our celebrations we want to showcase the power of art and creativity to make a positive difference. Enrich not Exploit, nurturing and protecting the world we live in and the people we live in it with, is a hugely relevant conversation for our young people, so who better to get involved than our pupils whose creative potential is immense. Students are being encouraged to use any media they enjoy, from painting, pencils to photography.“

Entries must be received by 24th March.

Details of how to enter are at:   www.thebodyshop.co.uk/content/its-in-your-hands.aspx#streetart

A selection of the shortlisted artwork will be displayed on a website gallery until the winners  are  announced on 11th April.

For more details on the Commitment, visit www.thebodyshop.com/commitment

PR by Clive Reeves PR Birmingham