Gorilla sculptures to line streets
A series of life-size gorilla sculptures is set to appear on a city's streets to celebrate a zoo's 175th birthday, it has been announced.
A selection of the 5ft, 3D gorillas was unveiled at the Clifton Suspension Bridge on Tuesday to launch the start of Bristol Zoo Gardens' milestone birthday next year.
Called Wow! Gorillas, the sculptures are also aimed at raising funds and awareness of the threats facing gorillas and other apes in the wild, as well as celebrating the zoo's birthday.
As part of the launch event, Bristol Zoo invited a special guest - a "real" gorilla.
The life-like, interactive, animatronic gorilla, created by Animated Extras, helped draw attention to the zoo's project, and to raise awareness of the plight of apes in the wild.
Now businesses, organisations and schools from across the city are being invited to sponsor a gorilla sculpture.
Once sponsored, the sculptures will be individually painted by local and regional artists, community groups and schools with their own designs.
The gorillas will then form a public art trail around the streets and parks of Bristol for 10 weeks next summer.
Dr Bryan Carroll, director of Bristol Zoo Gardens, said: "We want our birthday year to be a city-wide celebration of all that is great about Bristol and its people.
"Our exciting Wow! Gorillas project will showcase the creativity of Bristol while attracting visitors to the city, thus stimulating the local economy, and will be the highlight of the year. We hope the colourful sculptures will be enjoyed by thousands of Bristolians and visitors to the city."