If you're in Ipswich, Suffolk, this Summer, you will scarcely fail to notice a herd of 50 elephants, each lovingly hand-painted by an artist according to a unique design. These elephants represent the much loved children's book character Elmer the Patchwork Elephant who is celebrating his 30th birthday in 2019, hence Andersen Press have teamed up with creative event producers Wild in Art to present Elmer's Big Parade Suffolk. The Ipswich Elmer trail is the much anticipated sequel to Pigs Gone Wild 2016 and will continue to raise vital funds for St Elizabeth Hospice.
Local Ipswich artist, speed-painter and Wild in Art veteran, Lois Cordelia is currently bringing to life one of her three Elmer designs called Hope, a celebration of family bonds and togetherness, commissioned by and generously sponsored by Suffolk Fostering and Adoption.
Celebrating the life-changing influence of fostering and adoption to nurture a child's development through hope, this Elmer design depicts families in all shapes and sizes, connected via the branches of a giant family 'tree'. Elephants, too, are well known for their complex social lives, including their capacity to adopt an orphaned or abandoned calf. Elmer reminds us in particular to celebrate our individuality and be proud of who we are: every child should have the hope, security and love they need to manifest their fullest potential.
Above and below:
A miniature cuddly toy Elmer adopts five new friends: the charming hand-knitted collection of dolls that serve as ambassadors for the vital work of Suffolk Fostering and Adoption , which also feature in silhouetted form on Lois's Elmer design Hope. N.B. Work in progress - the full design cannot be revealed publicly until the trail launches in June 2019!
The same five dolls sit comfortably while watching the early stages of Elmer painting in progress: N.B. Work in progress - the full design cannot be revealed publicly until the trail launches in June 2019!
Lois is currently busy painting two Elmer designs (E=MC2 and Hope) for Elmer's Big Parade Suffolk, working live at Endeavour House, Ipswich, this week (Tuesday 22nd until Friday 25th January 2019, 9.00 am - 5.00 pm). Visitors are welcome! (Please check in at reception and let them know you've come to visit Elmers in progress.)
Lois's previously painted one of the Pigs ("Pig-geswyk") for Pigs Gone Wild 2016, as well as one of the early pre-launch Elmer statues ("Imagination Can Take You Anywhere").
Above: Ipswich artist Lois Cordelia beside her first Elmer design "Imagination Can Take You Anywhere"
Three Elmer statues including Elmer the Patchwork Elephant (painted by Michelle Turton), "Astronaut" (designed and painted by Mik Richardson) and "Imagination can take you anywhere" (by Lois Cordelia) were originally unveiled on 25th October 2017 during St Elizabeth Hospice's official Ipswich "Big Reveal" event. The Ipswich Elmer trail is the much anticipated follow-on from Pigs Gone Wild 2016 and will continue to raise vital funds for St Elizabeth Hospice.
Below: The official unveiling at Ipswich Town Hall on 25th October 2017.
Mik Richardson's "Astronaut" and Lois Cordelia's "Imagination can take you anywhere"