The Great Gorillas Project really brought out the best in artists. Creative talent from across the South West and well beyond responded with enthusiasm. The call for designs brought in some 200 submissions – the variety of styles and treatments was quite extraordinary.
Artists came with a wide range of experiences and backgrounds. Seasoned professionals, accomplished amateurs, ceramicists, print-makers, tattoo artists and graffiti specialists all wanted to be part of this project.
The result was a dazzling display. The gorillas started out all the same and end up – well, as just about anything you can imagine. As dragons, as holiday-makers or as three-dimensional fine art canvases. The thing they had in common was imagination.
In so many cases the Great Gorillas artists had great stories to tell. One artist, Jessica Miller, is the little sister of a gorilla keeper at Paignton Zoo; another, Danny Kidd, is the tattoo artist responsible for decorating some of her colleagues. Husband and wife artists Deborah Treliving and Malcolm Law were commissioned to paint gorillas for different sponsors.
At the heart of all this has been creativetorbay.com, the online home for the arts in Torbay and South Devon. The interactive web site – a partnership between the council, businesses and artists – is a hub for those who make art, those who display art and those who love art. Visitors and residents alike can keep up to date by going to www.creativetorbay.com.