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Press release   •   Jun 03, 2015 17:03 UTC

Emma Slora Breene from Kent, UK, has won an international art competition by Elephant Parade and will have her design painted onto a one of the elephant statues for the Elephant Parade Bangkok later this year. Her prize also includes a VIP trip to Bangkok to see her design unveiled.

The Elephant Parade Artbox Contest has been presented by Anantara Resort & Spas. More than 500 people around the world submitted entries and nearly 5,000 people cast their votes for their favourite designs.

Wan Ling Yung from Hong Kong and Catherine Knowles from the UK won second and third place prizes, which feature a stay in the luxurious Anantara resort in Chiang Mai.

The inspiration for Emma’s winning design Am's Asian Feast was based on her encounter with a baby elephant named Am, who had a keen appetite for bananas. Emma comments: “I have always loved art since I was able to hold a pen. I went on to study art at the Kent Institute of Art & Design for Foundation followed by a BA Honours Degree in Illustration at Kingston University, London. For as long as I can remember, I have always loved animals. It was whilst on honeymoon in Northern Thailand that I became passionate about elephants. We stayed in the Golden Triangle at one of the resorts that benefits from the work of the Elephant Parade. It was wonderful to see the work of the Asian Elephant Foundation in rescuing elephants to bring to this haven with their mahouts. This is where I got my inspiration for Am's Asian Feast, meeting a baby elephant called Am, who I was able to feed at breakfast. He had a voracious appetite for bananas, and it was this that first gave me the idea of basing my elephant around the diet of an Asian elephant in its natural habitat. It was also whilst on honeymoon that we purchased a replica elephant from a previous Elephant Parade exhibition, and subsequently found out about the Artbox contest!

Emma’s prize includes a flight to Bangkok where she will be staying at the Anantara Riverside Resort & Spa for 3 nights. Also, her design will be featured in full-size at Elephant Parade Bangkok 2015 starting December 1st.

The designs A Wonderland by Wan Ling Yung from Hong Kong and Bindi by Catherine Knowles from the UK earned their creators a three-night stay package at Anantara Chiang Mai Resort & Spa where they will visit Elephant Parade House and meet Mosha, the inspiration behind Elephant Parade. The designs that ranked 4th-10th will have the opportunity to pick any 30cm replica from the Elephant Parade web shop as a prize.

Second prize winner Wan Ling says about her design 'A Wonderland': "My design represents childhood innocence. I believe all of us have our bright side, and it depends on how we express it. I hope for world peace, free from pain and sorrow, so that everyone could express their purest, most beautiful side. There are no superb techniques, only cute red mushrooms, green grassland, small wild flowers, shining stars and a blue sky. The most important part of 'A Wonderland' is how bright the elephant's eyes are! Its eyes are sharp, dazzling, beautiful and gentle. Can you feel it too?"

The winner of the third prize, Catherine, took her inspiration from elsewhere. She comments: "When I looked at pictures of Asian elephants and the tradition of painting them, I really liked the decorative headgear they wear and that inspired me. Nobody had really done anything like that as far as I could see. I chose royal colours, purple and gold, because elephants are very regal and proud animals. The name 'Bindi' came from the little jewel bindis, which I used in my design. Traditionally, the area between the eyebrows on a person (where the bindi is placed) is said to be the sixth chakra, the seat of 'concealed wisdom' and this seemed appropriate to use in my design because elephants are such intelligent creatures."

The Elephant Parade Global Artbox Competition has appealed to people of all ages and artistic capabilities - ranging from a four year old to a 70 year old. Elephant Parade received entries from Newcastle to Luxembourg, Hong Kong to South Africa, Boston to Dubai: the finalists symbolise Elephant Parade’s global footprint in a year when it is embarking on ground-breaking new public art expositions in China, France, Brazil and Thailand.

Mike Spits, Founder and CEO of Elephant Parade commented: “The Global Artbox Contest is a reflection of the global movement that Elephant Parade is building. Over the last nine years, Elephant Parade has trail-blazed major cultural centres of the world and been supported by top artists and public figures. The art box contest gives a new platform for tomorrow’s talent to make their mark and we hope Elephant Parade will play it’s part in letting the world discover the great artists of tomorrow. The project is fun but it also helps raise awareness of the plight of the elephant. Through art we can all paint a brighter future.”

Elephant Parade is the world’s largest open air art exhibition of decorated elephant statues that seeks to attract public awareness and support for Asian elephant conservation. Created by local and international artists, each elephant is a unique piece of art. Parades have been run in the following cities:

Rotterdam 2007

Antwerp 2008                      

Amsterdam 2009

Emmen Zoo 2010                           

London 2010           

Bergen 2010            

Heerlen 2011

Copenhagen 2011 

Milan 2011   

Singapore 2011                  

Hasselt 2012

Trier-Luxembourg 2013

Dana Point, California 2013

The UK national tour 2013-14 

- A 14 month non-stop tour, visiting London, Nottingham, Manchester, Stoke, Glasgow, Gateshead, Cardiff, Newcastle, Norwich, Uxbridge, Lakeside, Bromley and Watford

Hong Kong - 2014

Calais - 2015

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