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Few gorillas left as islanders ‘go wild’ for fundraising sculptures

Few gorillas left as islanders ‘go wild’ for fundraising sculptures

Friday 11 January 2019

Few gorillas left as islanders ‘go wild’ for fundraising sculptures


Fewer than 10 gorillas forming part of a unique art initiative set to take Jersey by storm this summer are yet to be ‘adopted’.

Durrel’s ‘Go Wild’ Gorillas initiative will see 40 life-sized gorilla sculptures form a public art trail around the island in celebration of the wildlife conservation charity’s 60th anniversary this year.

It will be the biggest ever mass-participation public art event in Jersey.

So far, over 30 of the large sculptures have been ‘adopted’ by local businesses, and few remain.

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Pictured: The money raised will go towards a new gorilla enclosure at Jersey Zoo.

Each sponsor will see their gorilla transformed into a colourful work of art, with funds raised from the sponsorships going towards creating a new state-of-the-art gorilla house.

They’ll be able to select from designs submitted by local and international artists at an event on 31 January. The successful artists are then commissioned to customise each sculpture, giving both well-known and yet undiscovered creatives a unique platform for their artwork to be enjoyed by locals and tourists alike.

Durrell’s CEO, Dr Lesley Dickie, described the art trail, which will be launched over the summer, as “the highlight of this year’s creative and cultural calendar”. 

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Pictured: Local artist Will Bertram with one of the gorillas.

“I have seen these events in action and they really engage the whole community, get people of all ages outside exploring nature, discovering art and enjoying time together. This is such an exciting and unique opportunity for businesses of all types to get involved.”

Bailiwick Express is Media Partner for the project, Quilter Cheviot is Presenting Partner, while Citi is Community Partner, and will facilitate a range of community groups related to the project.

As well as seeking sponsors for the last few gorillas, the charity are also looking for an Education Partner to work with schools and young people across the island.

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Pictured: Durrell has promised a colourful trail of 40 gorillas in what will be the island's largest public art installation.

“An important element of Go Wild Gorillas and indeed Durrell’s mission is education. As part of this event we are offering schools on the island their own smaller gorilla sculpture, along with a creative learning pack that ties into the curriculum. We are looking for a sponsor to support this programme. It’s a really incredible opportunity to support the island’s young people via this project that combines the worlds of art and conservation,” Dr Lesley Dickie explained.

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