Local artists are being sought to sign up for Oxford’s OxTrail event to have their designs featured in the city’s biggest-ever public art event, which will take place in July 2024.
Artists will submit designs to transform life-sized oxen into a magnificent creative display which will be seen by thousands. Those chosen will receive £1,000 and be pivotal in raising money for Sobell House Hospice.
All artistic styles and approaches are encouraged – from traditional to new media, fine art to graffiti, or illustration to mosaic.
Artists who sign up will have until 15 December 2023 to submit drawings before the sponsors of each life-sized sculpture choose from the designs submitted.
There will be up to 40 oxen on the trail, with sponsors including Oxford Bus Company, Oxford City Football Club and Blenheim Palace.
Amelia Foster, CEO of Sobell House Hospice Charity, said: “OxTrail aims to give budding and established artists a fantastic platform to showcase their talent.
“We want to make public art accessible and boost tourism across Oxfordshire, encourage people to get active, and raise essential funds for the hospice and its services. Sobell House serves our community and we hope OxTrail will help to bring the community together.”
More than half of the specially designed life-sized ox sculptures have now been sponsored by companies in and around the city, but there is still a chance for businesses to ‘join the herd’.
There are also still spaces for schools to participate in creating their own mini ox, which will appear in herds all over the region next year.
OxTrail will launch publicly on 06 July 2024, and the art will be on display until early September 2024. After this, the sculptures will be auctioned off to raise money for the hospice.
For more information on registering to be an OxTrail artist, sponsoring an ox or if you’re a school looking to sign up, visit the project’s dedicated website at www.oxtrail2024.co.uk.
OxTrail is being held in partnership with Wild in Art. Cities worldwide have famously brought their streets to life via Wild in Art installations, including Manchester, Sydney, Cape Town and São Paulo.
Since 1976, Sobell House Hospice has provided compassionate care to adults with a life-limiting illness and supported their loved ones.
At any given time, it cares for around 650 people across Oxfordshire at home, in its inpatient unit, in local hospitals, and through its Living Well service.
It is jointly funded by the NHS and the Sobell House Hospice Charity. Every year, the charity raises around £3 million to help pay for the care it provides.