Have a walk along the Thames right now and you may just think that animals from the London Zoo have escaped, but fret not, these lifesize animal sculptures are part of a free public sculpture trail that shines a light on the pressing problem of wildlife extinction.
Sculpture duo Gillie and Marc, known for their anthropomorphic dog and rabbit sculptures which feature on the trail, have brought their new menagerie to London Bridge City named ‘A Wild Life for Wildlife’. The artists had previously scattered a trail of chimpanzee sculptures across the city and were behind the herd of bronze elephants popping up in Marble Arch but this new display in partnership with Zoological Society of London (ZSL) may be their most thought-provoking yet.
The trail, which is on until September 18 2024, features 11 sculptures playfully depicting animals in peculiar poses and settings. You’ll find a white rhino concentrating on a game of chase with Gillie and Marc’s Dogman, quite literally a hybrid of a dog and a man, a Masai giraffe slurping up spaghetti whilst having dinner with Rabbitwoman, and an Eastern Lowland gorilla behind the camera during a photoshoot with Dogman.
At first glance, the sculptures are light-hearted and fun but with a closer look, they deliver an eye-opening message about wildlife extinction. The animals featured on the sculpture trail face imminent extinction and place this issue in the heart of our urban jungle. With QR codes connected with the sculpture, the public will be transported to important information about the different animals’ lives, needs, and threats.
‘A Wild Life for Wildlife’ is part of the broader ‘Love The Last’, a movement driven by public art to raise awareness, funds and support for endangered animals across the world, encouraging people to take action before we lose these animals forever. To find out more about the trail and to view the trail map head here.