With water, we thrive.

2020 marks a pivotal moment for HSBC’s ‘Water Programme’ — an 8 year long, $150m commitment to improving water sanitation and helping communities to thrive all across the world, comes to a close as they look to their next global social responsibility project.

SomeOne, alongside Chime Sports Marketing and AR/VR agency Unbnd, worked with HSBC to design and curate a mini interactive art exhibition to showcase the decade long commitment. It ran alongside ‘Water’, a four-month international exhibit in Brisbane’s Gallery of Modern Art (GOMA).


When it comes to sponsorships in Australia, HSBC is known for its partnerships within the sports industry, particularly the Rugby 7’s. Having affiliated themselves with sports for so long, 2020 presented a new opportunity for collaborations within the arts and a chance to further diversify their presence among Australian (and global) culture.

QAGOMA, the twinned Queensland Art Gallery & Gallery of Modern Art in Brisbane are the first sponsorship partners for HSBC in the arts — both globally renowned destinations that bring in over 2 million visitors each year. The exhibition ran from December to March of this year.

A conservation, conversation

HSBC has for nearly a decade been behind several globally impacting programs for water conservation known as their ‘Water stories’ — working closely with Water Aid, WWF & Earth Watch Institute. Now reaching a crescendo moment for the projects (2020 marks the end of some and the beginning of others) the time was right to showcase the enormity of their work and celebrate 8 years of radical shifting in how we conserve and preserve our planets water supply.

We put forward several concepts for the installation, from large scale sculptures built from reclaimed ocean debris, to enclosed projection pods that mimic the sensation of being underwater, before settling on the AR activated art prints. Pieces that invite viewer interaction and encourage dialogue among visitors and museum staff.

hectares of wetland protected
2.63 Million
people helped through water sanitation and conservation

GOMA’s ‘Water’ exhibition put a spotlight on our planet’s precious resource and set out to spark conversations on the environmental and social challenges faced by today’s world. Making it an ideal platform for HSBC to partner up to showcase the effects of their decade long work in water conservation.

Say hello to ‘With Water, We Thrive’.

Two interactive art pieces where gallery visitors are invited to interact with the photographic prints through Augmented Reality. This transforms the static environments into vibrant, thriving eco-systems that grow and flourish out into the gallery space in front of you.


The artworks

Two stories became the base for the interactive artworks.

  1. Reviving the Pantanal. Where agriculture has impacted the diversity and health of wildlife, HSBC & WWF have worked to shift human behaviour and help revive the wetlands in Brazil.
  2. Sustainably fishing the Yangtze River. HSBC’s involvement has helped to restore the river’s biodiversity and enabled over 170,000 people to fish sustainably.

The AR platform allowed for deep diving into the stories they visualised as well as the ability to film the pieces come to life in real-time as you move around the artworks.

Each scene is crafted and composed from hundreds of individual elements — a mix of photography and CG — to build environments that accurately represent the locations they depict.

Celebrating the achievements of these projects in the artworks we’ve created is bringing the stories to more people in ways that are instantly ‘gettable’ and encourage people to discuss the issues and to share both physically and on social media.

Tom DabnerCreative Director, SomeOne

Someone & CSM hit the ground running in what was a very short planning phase, and delivered an activation that was imaginative, engaging and worked really well to launch HSBC’s new partnership with QAGOMA.

Hayley D’ElbouxMarketing Manager, Sponsorship & Events, HSBC Bank Australia