In 1972 a five and a half metre tall King Kong statue by Nicholas Monro stood at the Bullring. It was loved by the community, featured in protests, and after leaving the Bullring moved around Birmingham, visited Edinburgh and now enjoys a quiet retirement in Penrith.
Birmingham has never forgotten.
Brum loved its monkey.
Now I want to create a new five-metre monkey for Birmingham. I'm currently exhibiting a vast array of Poppet Simians at both Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery and The Barber Institute of Fine Arts, with the biggest poppets on display being 2m tall (also known as 'The poppets as big as a real boy'). This time i want to exceed myself, and taking King Kong as my inspiration am planning to make a 5.5m tall sock monkey large enough to dominate the beloved Birmingham Bullring Bull.
This Sock Monkey is exceedingly likely to be the BIGGEST EVER MADE ANYWHERE. Current estimates suggest that it will require at least thirty-one pairs of socks and the equivalent of four king-sized duvets full of stuffing.
One fine summers day all the backers will receive the details of where the gargantuan poppet will begin its journey.
The plan is to get the Bullrider to intervene with as many pieces of public art in Birmingham as we can manage in one day. After this the poppet will go on tour around the region - galleries and institutions of all varieties and sizes are currently being invited to host the Bullrider so it can see as much of the region as possible before going to its eventual home.
THIS PROJECT NEEDS YOU!
Because the costs in making a poppet of perfectly preposterous proportions are unfortunately more than I can personally absorb. Plus I want to make a majestic piece of community art that all who take part in can look back upon fondly - I want as many people as possible to be able to say "do you remember the time we ran around Birmingham as a gang with a 18ft sock monkey?"
Lets make monkey history!
Back The Birmingham Bullrider!
Risks and challenges
The major potential challenge is in the manufacture of the poppet - while i feel that making this gargantuan monkey is within my capacity (having made several 2 metre tall chaps) the increase in scale has called for a revaluation of technique. As such the poppet will be constructed from the stuffing and then covered in the skin, rather than attempting to make the skin and then stuffing it.
The other potential pitfall could be the eventual flashmob - it is likely to occur on a sunday so we'll be as un-disruptive as possible, and if there are any difficulties in getting it to interact with a work then no chances will be taken.
As the poppet will be made from socks and stuffing it won't damage anything it interacts with.
There will be a team of at least four people to carry the poppet, aside from backers at the flashmob.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (29 days)