Alumni in the Leaves: Grandifolia Camelopardalis

March 21, 2024  •  1 Comment

Where to find Grandifolia Camelopardalis - outside St John's College
What3Words location: https://w3w.co/piles.pills.covers


From 21st March until 2nd June 2024, the streets of Cambridge will host 'Cambridge Standing Tall', a towering exhibition of Giraffe statues, each one lovingly painted by an artist. The trail will raise valuable funds for East Anglian children's charity Break, will boost local businesses, and inspire thousands of visitors of every age.

Loïs Cordelia travelled to Cambridge in September 2023 to paint her Giraffe. Her design is commissioned and generously sponsored by Zing Insights. Lisa Holt founded the company in 2011: a full service market research agency specialising in measuring and evaluating customer experiences to help our clients improve, grow and become more profitable. Lisa had seen a 'Green Man' inspired design that Loïs had previously painted for a trail in Southend, an Elephant covered in foliate faces, some of them loosely based on famous faces, and she asked Loïs whether she might create something similar on a Giraffe. But this time, the design would be themed exclusively on famous Alumni of Cambridge University.

This film (24 minutes) captures some behind-the-scenes footage of the evolution of this unique species of Giraffe, Grandifolia Camelopardalis, found only in Cambridge. The Giraffe's distinctive camouflage allows it to blend in with an illustrious backdrop of famous Alumni.









Loïs had to stand on a windowsill to reach high enough to paint the left-brained Stephen Hawking and the right-brained Peter Paul Rubens on the left and right sides of the Giraffe's head. The high-ceilinged painting space was at Cambridgeshire Music, a music school in Histon, just north of Cambridge.
Loïs had barely 40 hours to complete the entire design, including two base coats of dark green and 41 foliate portraits. A full list of the Alumni featured is included at the end of this blog post.



Loïs dedicated the film to the memory of children's author-illustrator Jan Pienkowski (1936 - 2022), in whose beautiful west London studio she worked part-time as an assistant from 1998 until 2019. Jan was an Alumnus of King's College, Cambridge, where he studied Classics.

Pre-lockdown, Loïs used to perform regular live speed-art demonstrations and teach workshops at Tindalls Art Shop in King Street, Cambridge. She taught private lessons for a small art group in the city. For the Winter of 2021-22, she had a giant papercut triptych installation depicting Cambridge landmarks in the windows of the 50/60 Building on Station Road. Loïs has also collaborated with Cambridge-based author Elizabeth Peck.




Where to find Grandifolia Camelopardalis - outside St John's College
What3Words location: https://w3w.co/piles.pills.covers

1) Charles Darwin
2) Sir Ian McKellen
3) Jagadish Chandra Bose
4) Jin Yong
5) J J Thompson
6) Rosalind Franklin
7) Hugh Laurie
8) John Donne
9) Naomie Harris
10) Alan Turing
11) Richard Ayoade
12) Stephen Fry
13) Robert Frost
14) Carol Vorderman
15) Lee Kuan Yew
16) Sir David Attenborough
17) Tom Hiddleston
18) Freeman Dyson
19) James Clerk Maxwell
20) Graham Chapman
21) Tilda Swinton
22) Stephen Hawking
23) Peter Paul Rubens
24) William Thomson, Lord Kelvin
25) Eric Idle
26) Freddie Highmore
27) Rina Sawayama
28) Rachel Weisz
29) John Cleese
30) Isaac Newton
31) Charles Thomas Rees Wilson
32) Thandiwe Newton
33) King Charles
34) Francois Gilot
35) Arianna Huffington
36) James Chadwick
37) Emma Thompson
38) Ernest Rutherford
39) M S Swaminathan
40) Ronald Fisher
41) William Makepeace Thackeray





Comments

Yoli Nobel(non-registered)
Lois you are the greatest artist. What you did painting the portraits of 41 alumni of Cambridge shows that. I am so glad I was in your workshops.
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