Alexandra Bombita and Maria Guseth are representing Romania at Cannes Young Lions Design

Education, Festivals & Awards, People

Alexandra Bombita & Maria Guseth (aka Dorothy’s Slippers) qualified in the Young Lions Design competition at Cannes Lions after winning the spot in a national competition at The Alternative School. Cannes Lions will take between 18th and 25th of June.


They will take part in the 24 hours competition alongside the best teams of the world, working on a brief involving social matters. Following the competition, throughout the week, they will be able to network and learn on the Croisette, where, at the end of every June, for 62 years now, the best people in the creative industries worldwide come together.


This year, the team competing in Young Lions Design is sponsored by Praecisio, exclusive importer and distributor of Nikon Lenswear – a premium brand for optical lenses made for visionaries with style – in Romania.


The Dorothy’s Slippers duo came through with every brief in the local competition – their smart and innovative solutions were top campaigns, leaving behind the other 10 teams.

Alexandra (copy & strategist) and Maria (art director) work for Leo Burnett, one of the Romanian agencies with international pedigree.



Nikon Lenswear is a brand about performance as a natural thing. On that account, for connoisseurs. In our international campaigns, we address visionaries: architects, designers, engineers and artists of all kinds. The association with the Romanian performers in the creative field and with the extraordinary atmosphere on the Croisette is in the vibe of our brand. Throughout time, Nikon proved that it can make remarkably high quality products in the most extreme conditions. From expeditions in the wild arctic zones to space missions into the unknown, Nikon won the badge of a legendary brand. Today, the company continues its mission: the clear, trusty and very precise reproduction of images, from infinitely big to infinitely small.


The unique experience of Nikon in complex optical surfaces is also translated into the conception of ophthalmic lenses. Because of that, Nikon lenses are renowned for their perfect design and a guarantee for excellent eyesight. Thus, this partnership and the support we’re offering to Alexandra and Maria –we wish it offers them all the chances to take a place on the podium at the Cannes Lions Festival. We wish all the success in the world to the Romanian creatives!

Theodor Pana,

Representative for Nikon Lenswear Romania.

About the experience at The Alternative School and their expectations from Cannes, the duo said:


From aside, many see only a few teams solving briefs. In reality, this school caries you through a carousel of emotions and states: you can become prematurely happy about having found “THE idea”, but once seen on a board, you hate it with your guts. 3 days later, after hopeless searches, you come back and discover that the initial concept is exactly what you needed. This bipolarity is part of the processes: a training for patience, perseverance and determination for finishing a project.

Maria Guseth


I am very happy about this confirmation, especially because two years ago I couldn’t participate. I am glad we’re consistent in our work, we even made some progress: started on the third place, finished first. Here is where the school made a difference with its briefs. As for Cannes, I try to look at this experience with more responsibility. I feel like we need to affirm there also (for us, for the school, for the agency), and this is where the pressure comes from. But let’s not get ahead of ourselves.

Alexandra Bombita


In the jury for the 2016 Cannes semester, The Alternative School brought some big names in the local and international creative industry, people in marketing and CEOs: Luis Miguel Messianu USA (CEO Alma and juror at Cannes 2016), Alvin Teoh (CD DDB Malaesia), David Khoo (CD, Chaos creative Malaesia), Hande Guler (CD, DDB Dubai), Theodor Pana (Marketing Director, Nikon Lenswear), Florentina Taudor (CEO Renania), Nicoleta Padure (CEO Media Concept Store and Romanian juror at Eurobest and Dubai Lynx), Elena Hurjui (CEO, The Heraldist), Mihai Fetcu (CD, Geometry Global, Gold winner at Cannes Lions 2015), Szabi Szekely (CEO Halcyon Mobile, multiple award winner in the global competition of FWA and Romanian juror at Cannes Lions Mobile in 2016), Nir Refuah (CEO MRM / McCann, multiple award winner in international competitions with focus on digital creativity), Cristian Costea (ECD in Hamburg, winner at Cannes Lions in 2015), Mihai Gongu (CD GMP, Grand Prix winner at Eurobest), Vlad Butucariu (Flio Stand / Studio Squash, Rotterdam), Ioana Halunga (Creative, Havas Singapore).

The Alternative School has been coaching and sending young creatives in international competitions for 11 years, offering them the opportunity to specialise at the best creative festival worldwide. Over the years, students of The Alternative School won remarkable awards on behalf of Romania: 3 Gold at Roger Hatchuel, Bronze for Print, Gold for Cyber and Design, shortlist at Young Clients. The graduates of the most rewarded Creative MBA in the South East of Europe went on to win international distinctions and perform: some, in local agencies, while others, in creative hubs around the world: Singapore, New York, Hamburg, Rotterdam, London, Amsterdam or Rio.

Over 250 young Romanians have benefited in the last 11 years from specializations at Cannes Lions, Eurobest or Dubai Lynx, through the programs of The Alternative School.