An Australian PR firm has issued a hasty apology after distributing a press release which used the downfall of disgraced Rolf Harris as a bizarre way of promoting its client.
AC Agency admitted the release was “in poor taste” and apologised for any offence.
The opening paragraph of the original release, issued earlier today, read: “Since the scandal of Rolph (sic) Harris there is only one other great Australian household name left – Pro Hart – and he’s having the last ever sale of his private art collection!”
Later, Dora Nikols, who sent the release, distributed an apology.
“This morning I sent out an email pitch referring to the recent scandal surrounding Rolf Harris in an effort to draw attention to a much loved household name – Pro Hart.
“I would like to deeply apologise for using a story angle that I now realise was in poor taste and deeply regret offending anyone. This angle was in response to an article we had published in Crikey that referred to the disgraced Australian which I should never have used.
“Please accept my deep apology and an updated pitch below about the last ever auction of Pro Hart’s work and an interview opportunity with Australian art historian Gavin Fry. My sincere apologies, Dora.”
According to Nikols’ LinkedIn profile: “I create meaningful publicity for my clients to help them build good corporate reputations and develop trust and loyalty in the market”.
The original release:
Since the scandal of Rolph Harris there is only one other great Australian household name left – Pro Hart – and he’s having the last ever sale of his private art collection!
Pro Hart became famous for his television commercials, he found wide fame in the Stainmaster Carpet ads in the 1970′s where he splattered red wine, spaghetti, red wine and chocolate over a rug then splattered his body across it to create a dragonfly! Along with the ads he is Australia’s most well-known and prolific artists – most Australians know Pro Hart and many own his art works.
Now for the first time his family is selling 173 of his most famous and prized art works which are priced for everyday Australians. The private art collection goes on sale on Tuesday 22 July at auction house Leonard Joel where anyone in Australia can bid in real time.
To coincide with the sale Australian art historian Gavin Fry has also launched a ‘warts and all’ account of the famous artist – book launch on 17 July.
I thought this would make a great story. We also have a list of great spokespeople including:
- Gavin Fry – Australian art historian and author of Pro Hart Life & Legacy
- Sophie Ullin – Art expert at Leonard Joel
- John Hart – Pro Hart’s son who is also an artist
- Raylee Hart – Pro Hart’s wife