Edinburgh-wide Giraffe about Town art trail hits the streets

Over 40 eight-foot-tall giraffe sculptures hit the streets of Edinburgh on Friday, as part of Edinburgh Zoo’s Giraffe About Town trail.

Staff from the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland (RZSS) worked overnight to place the sculptures in spots around the Capital. The giraffes will be on display until August 29, and then they will be brought together for a final farewell weekend at the zoo in September.

The trail, which was planned in partnership with Wild in Art, was created to help the city recover after the pandemic.

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Each giraffe model was individually designed by artists and communities to help celebrate Edinburgh’s heritage and cultural diversity.

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    Ben Supple, director of engagement and business development at RZSS said: “It is so exciting to see our giraffe sculptures out in the wild after over a year of hard work and collaboration to bring this exciting free art trail to the people and streets of Edinburgh.

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    “With the challenges we have all been facing, we hope Giraffe About Town will help local people and tourists fall in love with Edinburgh all over again by encouraging them to explore iconic locations and hidden gems across the city.

    “Every sculpture has been sponsored by an organisation with ties to our local community or conservation and is a fantastic example of what can be achieved when we work together.”

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    One of the eight-foot sculptures overlooks the Capital. (Credit: RZSS)

    After the trail ends, the sculptures will be auctioned 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 wildlife conservation charity over £1.5 million.

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    Mr Supple continued: “As well as raising funds for RZSS, we wanted to give back to the communities that helped us care for our amazing animals and keep our conservation work going when the zoo was closed. It has been incredible to see the support visitors, communities and businesses have given us.”

    Alongside the main ‘tall trail’, a ‘wee herd’ of 29 four-foot-tall giraffes will be on display in city centre locations, libraries and other community spaces.

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    Maps for the trail can be found on the Giraffe About Town website and app, in a special pull out in the Edinburgh Evening News and Scotsman this weekend or at Lothian Buses travel shops, Visit Scotland information kiosks and at Edinburgh Zoo.

    The colourful giraffes can be found in various locations around Edinburgh city centre. (Photo credit: RZSS)