Tuesday, 24 May 2016

Elephants?

Howdy!

I've been working on a rather unusual commission this month, in the shape of an elephant; not a print of an elephant, but a great big fibreglass elephant! My job was to transform it into a piece of art, as part of the 'Herd Of Sheffield' project. In brief, fifty artists in the city have been chosen to apply a transformation, and the finished elephants are going to be displayed around Sheffield as a kind of trail from July 2016. People will be encouraged to find them all with the help of a special app. Each elephant has a sponsor (mine is the University Of Sheffield), and when the trail ends in September, the elephants will be auctioned off, with proceeds going to the Sheffield Children's Hospital.

In addition to this, lots of schools of Sheffield have been getting involved, transforming a load of smaller beasts. these will be displayed in the city, too.

As my studio isn't really big enough for a life-size elephant, my elephant was based in a Special Steels factory in Attercliffe, Sheffield, alongside a load of other artist's elephants. All sorts of great artists are involved in this, including George Law, Tom Newell, Kid Acne, Lisa Maltby, Jonathan Wilkinson, Florence Blanchard, Coralie Turpin-Thomson, Ella Osborne and many more. We were given two weeks to do our 'work' in the factory, and it was a lot of fun, but a really hard work too. I'm used to a printing studio, not a big smelly, grimy factory, but I think it did my brain some good to be out of my normal environment! I met some lovely artists that I hadn't before too, and in a way it felt like we were on some weird school project. We hung out, painted, drank gallons of tea and ate our sarnies, while the steel-workers gave us funny looks (they were all very friendly actually).

Here are a few sneaky preview shots of my elephant. As you might have guessed, I decided to have a 'donkey' theme. I'll show you the full thing when the Herd is launched in July 2016, and let you know where you can see him.

my undercover elephant!

pre-painted beast

work-in-progress donkeys 1

work-in-progress donkeys 2

work-in-progress donkeys 3

finished elephant leg!
 

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