When The Children’s Hospital Charity first invited artists to submit their Herd of Sheffield elephant designs, they were expecting a good few to be inspired by the amazing city we live in.
What they weren’t banking on was the incredible range and variety of these tributes. From cutlery based mammals to skyline masterpieces, we’ve rounded up some of our favourites from the steely, Sheffield-loving sculptures.
Caroline Greyling – An Elephant Never Forgets Where He Came From
This elephant is inspired by Johnny White’s ‘Barking Up the Right Tree’ sculpture, which is on display in the Millennium Gallery. This three-headed creature is made of recycled spoons, forks and knives, all forged in Sheffield. Press one of the buttons embedded in its side and the metallic monster will bark a warning. Reach for another and its long necks will whirr into motion. Both creations are a nod to Sheffield’s historic relationship with the steel and cutlery industries.
Where to see the elephant: Fargate
Ella Osborne – Sheffield Botanical
Take a wander through the stunning Botanical and Winter Gardens of Sheffield and you’ll often see artists sketching away. You might even spot Ella Osborne, who painted the hot pink Sheffield Botanical elephant in tribute to the many days she has spent amongst the plants of the gardens, honing her technique and drawing the huge variety of nature that they are home to.
Where to see the elephant: Barker's Pool
James Croft – In it Together
With his In It Together design, James Croft wanted to showcase his overall impression of Sheffield as a city full of friendly people. At the base of the elephant he painted bubbles showing figures in isolation. As they rise up the elephant leg, and move towards the city centre, the bubbles grow in size making more space for people to join together within them - reflecting the knack this city has for bringing people together!
Where to see the elephant: Botanical Gardens
Alan Pennington – Our City, Our Home
Up the legs of Alan Pennington’s, Our City, Our Home elephant run four of Sheffield’s rivers: Porter, Loxley, Sheaf and Rivelin and along its body runs an imagined Sheffield skyline. In order to show that Sheffield is beautiful whatever the weather, Alan painted iconic buildings as they appear throughout the year. Alan’s bold and colourful artwork is always inspired by the people and places in our vibrant city and his amazing contribution to the Herd of Sheffield is no exception.
Where to see the elephant: Park Hill
Pete McKee - Marjorie
Marjorie is a tribute to Pete’s late mother and mother-in-law, who both shared the name. The elephant, which features male steel workers on one side and ‘buffer girls’ on the other, pays homage to Sheffielders from days gone by, who toiled and worked to put food on the table for their families. Take a wander over to Kelham Island if you want to have a look at this hardy bunch!
Where to see the elephant: Kelham Island