By partnering with multi-award winning independent studio, Aardman, public art events company Wild in Art is producing art trails featuring the classic claymation characters we all know in love. Kicking off last month, trails will pop up all over the country and give members of the public a chance to meet and greet these stop-motion stalwarts.
Besides fulfilling Wild in Art's mission to bring art out of the galleries and into public spaces, the characters on display will also provide a 3D canvas and creative inspiration for the next generation of budding artists.
Launched on 29 January, the partnership is already underway, with Morph popping up in North Tyneside as part of 'Morph's Epic Art Adventure'. As a champion of creativity, who has entertained audiences since his first appearance on BBC children's art show Take Hart back in 1977, Morph is the perfect choice to launch the trail as fans of all ages will be able to recognise him.
Eagle-eyed viewers will notice that Morph, the twenty 1.8 metre tall sculptures of Morph, have been decorated with a lick of paint. Courtesy of commissioned artists from across the country, these vibrant finishes cover a wide range of themes, including flowers, character designs, and plays on the word Morph. Our favourite is the white one adorned with colourful patterning.
Morph's appearance in North Tyneside isn't the first Wild in Art trail to take over the area. Back in the winter of 2020, its town centre was home to sculptures of The Snowman and The Snowdog from the pictures books and animated films of Raymond Briggs. Their aim was to drive footfall to town centres, support the local economy in the process, and encourage families to get active and enjoy art as part of the local community.
Morph won't be holding the fort single-handed for long, though. The second part of the creative partnership will see Shaun the Sheep sculptures popping up in towns centres before long, with further additions to be announced soon.
Speaking of the trail, Wild in Art managing director and co-founder Charlie Langhorne said: "We are delighted to continue our partnership with Aardman and to bring these internationally renowned characters to art trails across the UK.
"Morph and Shaun the Sheep will bring colour and creativity to host locations. Each sculpture will be a conversation starter, with a different story to tell, allowing residents and visitors to explore their town or city from a different perspective. It's a Covid-friendly way for people to socialise, support local artists and our charity partners/a local charity and enjoy some exercise in the fresh air."
"We've got some exciting plans in development," adds Charlie, "and we look forward to revealing more host locations in the coming months."
Rob Goodchild, commercial director at Aardman, added: "We are very happy to be working with the great team at Wild in Art to bring more art trails featuring our characters to the streets of the UK, including the inaugural Morph art trail – a character that's encouraged creativity in generations of kids since the seventies.
"We look forward to finding fun and creative angles to connect our characters with each location and inspire people – young and old – to get creative."