Arrival of bright gorilla hints at new art trail from Durrell

A COLOURFUL gorilla now contributing to a more exotic atmosphere in Broad Street heralds the impending arrival of a new Islandwide sculpture trail to be organised by Durrell next summer.

Yesterday [13 May] The new gorilla sculpture, created by Ben Robertson, made its first appearance in town as a taster for Durrell’s next public art project developed in partnership with Wild in Art, an organization that specialises in public art events. It aims to inspire Islanders and visitors to explore Jersey’s natural environment, and follows the successful Go Wild Gorillas project in 2019 which involved 40 of the sculptures being displayed across the Island.

Decorated in a multitude of different prints, patterns and textures showing the beauty and diversity of the animal kingdom, the latest gorilla makes its appearance to offer a clue about the next trail. On 14 June at Government House, the new animal sculpture created especially for the 2023 trail will be formally unveiled, sponsorship and partnership opportunities will be available for companies, artists, schools, and community groups wanting to engage with the work.

Durrell’s director of communications and fundraising Alex Shears said they were thrilled at the prospect of bringing a new trail to the Island next year.

‘After the success of Go Wild Gorillas, we are so excited to once again create a trail that engages the whole community and gets people of all ages outdoors exploring nature, discovering art and enjoying time together.

‘It’s also a fantastic opportunity for local businesses, artists, schools and community groups to get involved.

‘We cannot wait to reveal the next sculpture at the launch on 14 June and hope everyone will join the conversation online and have a guess as to what the next animal could be,’ she said.

Charlie Langhorne, managing director of Wild in Art, echoed her enthusiasm, adding that he was sure that the trail would capture the imaginations of residents and visitors while helping raise much-needed funds to support Durrell’s conservation work.

Meanwhile, it is not too late to register for this year’s Durrell Challenge on Sunday 22 May and join runners here in Jersey and across the globe as they tackle 13 kilometres to raise funds to create a wilder, healthier, more colorful world.

Sponsored by Butterfield, the event will once again start from St Helier’s Victoria Park and finish at Jersey Zoo in Trinity, the route taking runners through beautiful valleys and quiet country lanes.

Runners, wherever they may be, have the option to take part virtually by running the distance at any time between 20 and 23 May, submitting their results to Durrell via Strava. Registration for the race closes at 9am on Wednesday 18 May.

Durrell is also appealing for volunteers to assist as route marshals on the day from 7am to 2pm. All volunteers will receive a breakfast box and free entry to the Zoo after the run, and transport from Victoria Park to their marshal location and back to either the park or Jersey Zoo. To sign up as a volunteer, please email or call 01534 505926.

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