Giraffe About Town: Eight foot tall creature feels at home at Tollcross

Edinburgh Zoo’s Giraffe About Town saw a herd of giraffes spread across the capital last week, bringing colour and joy to the city streets.
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In partnership with Wild in Art, the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland (RZSS) 42 giant giraffe sculptures can now be found at famous Edinburgh landmarks to help the city recover after lockdown and raise much needed funds for wildlife conservation.

Each sculpture has been designed and decorated by artists and communities to create the large-scale public art event, which celebrates the city’s extraordinary heritage and cultural diversity.

Gerald's patterned coat is inspired by a range of animals from Edinburgh Zoo. He can be found at Tollcross.Gerald's patterned coat is inspired by a range of animals from Edinburgh Zoo. He can be found at Tollcross.
Gerald's patterned coat is inspired by a range of animals from Edinburgh Zoo. He can be found at Tollcross.
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David Field, RZSS chief executive, said: “Following a wonderful welcome for our real-life giraffes in their new hilltop home at Edinburgh Zoo last May, we now want to share these majestic giants with the city of Edinburgh and visitors from around the UK and the world, through a stunning, art trail with something for everyone.”

Mr Field added: “Giraffe About Town will help local people and tourists fall in love with Scotland’s capital all over again by encouraging them to get out about town and explore these beautiful sculptures, while at the same time supporting the recovery of our wildlife conservation charity.”

The project will run until August 29 before being auctioned off in September to raise vital funds for RZSS after the Covid-19 pandemic forced the closures of Edinburgh Zoo and Highland Wildlife Park for five months, costing the charity over £1.5million.

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Lucy Hebden is a surface pattern and printed textile designer whose work is inspired by the natural world.Lucy Hebden is a surface pattern and printed textile designer whose work is inspired by the natural world.
Lucy Hebden is a surface pattern and printed textile designer whose work is inspired by the natural world.

For the next month we will introduce you these impressive creatures, their stories and where you can spot them.

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Today, we feature Gerald, who’s enormous height reflects the name of the location where he can be found; Tollcross.

Gerald is inspired by the amazing animals at Edinburgh Zoo and he takes his name from the real Gerald, a Nubian giraffe, who has been a resident of the zoo since May 2021.

Created by Lucy Loves Design, Gerald is covered in a patch work of illustrated animals who live at the zoo which have been collaged together to imitate a giraffe’s patterned coat.

Restaurant Associates proudly sponsor GeraldRestaurant Associates proudly sponsor Gerald
Restaurant Associates proudly sponsor Gerald

Lucy Hebden is a surface pattern and printed textile designer. She graduated from Loughborough University School of Art and Design with a degree in Printed Textiles.

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Lucy loves to draw, paint, collage and explore new ways of making patterns and her work is inspired by the natural world.

When you go to visit Gerald make sure to notice all the different animals decorating his body, including pandas, penguins, flamingos and sloths.

Gerald is proudly sponsored by Restaurant Associates who create unforgettable dining experiences at iconic venues across the UK.

Whether they are hosting your wedding in Edinburgh Zoo’s beautiful mansion house, or preparing vegan nachos in Grasslands Restaurant, they champion creativity, encourage collaboration, cultivate community and strive for client customer satisfaction.

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Remember, you can download the Giraffe About Town App to help you find all the majestic creatures and also be in with a chance to win prizes.

Plus, you can add to the gallery of sculptures, vote for your favourite and track how far you have walked whilst doing the trail.

The app costs 89p with proceeds going to the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland.