Celebrity-designed Lion Sculptures to Raise Awareness of Extinction Threat

A series of life-sized lion sculptures designed by celebrities are to be displayed across the globe in a bid to raise awareness of the threat to the species existence.

The sculptures are part of the Tusk Lion Trail, which was launched in London’s Piccadilly Circus by Rolling Stones guitarist Ronnie Wood, to help the conservation of lions.

The exhibition of 47 sculptures was curated by Chris Westbrook and takes place at locations across the globe from London’s West End to New Zealand’s Parliament building in Wellington.

The lions bring to life the stories of these iconic predators as well as the people who work tirelessly to protect them.

Great British Bake Off host Noel Fielding, Former Python John Cleese and actor Mathew Horne have also contributed designs that will go on display as part of the global installation.

According to the International Union for Conservation of Nature, lions now feature on a ‘red list’ which means the species is classed as vulnerable. Each sculpture aims to highlight a different important element of the lion and to raise awareness for conservation efforts for the animal across the world.

London is home to 27 of the sculptures which are based at various landmarks across the city and the public is being encouraged to follow a trail and ‘collect’ each lion as they spot it. Maps are available online.

The main pride of lions will stalk the streets of London and a second large pride will be installed across the pond in New York, while smaller prides and coalitions will pop up in major cities around the world.

The lion sculptures are on display until the end of September, and those based in the UK will be sold at auction in London in November to raise money for Tusk’s work in Africa.

Roy Hughes, executive vice president of network operations for Europe at DHL – which is sponsoring the trail – said seeing the sculptures “lining the streets of iconic locations across the globe for the masses to see ahead of the auction fills us with pride”.

Find out more about the artworks and how all funds raised will support local conservation and community development at the Tusk website.