Northampton artist aims for elephant parade prize

Elephant art Emma Breene
Elephant art Emma Breene

Northampton artist Emma Slora Breene has been shortlisted in the final of a global art competition.

It is the inaugural Artbox contest for the Elephant Parade, an international charity dedicated to the preservation of Asian elephants.

The winner will have a life-size replica of their elephant design painted and exhibited in the 2015 Bangkok Elephant Parade.

Elephant Parade currently supports 11 projects in eight elephant range countries, including financial, material and technical assistance. One of the projects is Friends of the Asian Elephant (FAE), based in Lampang, Thailand.

FAE operates the world’s first hospital for elephants and is home to Mosha, the inspiration of Elephant Parade. At the age of 7 months, Mosha lost a leg from a landmine explosion on the Myanmar-Thai border and was the first elephant to be fitted with a prosthetic leg.

The Elephant Parade exhibition toured the UK last year, and is preparing for its biggest ever exhibition back in Thailand where it was started.

Emma said: “I have been shortlisted alongside artists from as far afield as South Africa, Luxembourg, and the United States, and currently the public vote has me in joint first place with Hong Kong, but percentages are constantly changing.

“It would mean a great deal to get local support. My elephant’s design was inspired by meeting a baby elephant named Am, whose name can mean ‘immortal’. He had a voracious appetite for bananas, and the design incorporates this together with many other fruits, flowers, barks and grasses which constitute an Asian elephant’s diet.

“A peacock adorning the elephant is also native to Asia. In many cultures around the globe peacocks represent immortality and guardianship, an aspiration of the charity for the conservation of the Asian elephant.”

More than 500 people from more than 20 countries took part in the 12-month long competition which will now be judged by a public vote through the official Elephant Parade Facebook page or visiting http://woobox.com/7pky9v.

Voting closes on May 27.