Sir David Attenborough has given his approval to Norfolk’s GoGoDiscover trail, after learning that one of the T.rex sculptures was inspired by his love of the natural world.
The national treasure and world-renowned naturalist is the inspiration for Sirdavidsaurus, one of 55 T.rex sculptures from the Norwich area which feature alongside 24 mammoths scattered across the county, to raise vital funds for Break.
The dinosaur is designed by Norwich artist Faye Rackham and includes 56 different species.
She wrote to her sculpture‘s namesake and her hero to tell him about her work and the meaning behind it.
Two days later she received a handwritten letter from the man himself, from his home in Surrey, describing the sculpture as “a truly extraordinary concept and an unparalleled compliment”.
“I couldn’t believe it when I opened the envelope,” says Rackham. “I expected it to be a standard letter from his team, but to receive something so personal, and from someone I’ve looked up to since I was very young, was just amazing and absolutely overwhelming. I had tears in my eyes!”
Ms Rackham, who was diagnosed with autism in her 30s, says she found her voice to be a calming presence as she grew up and immersed herself in her documentaries.
“There was so much to remember, and I loved being able to record all the locations, lifespans and scientific names in my head,” Ms Rackham continued.
“I have become a walking information document for all things natural. It helped me feel and get away from everyday life.
“I now call my autism my superpower because it allows me to focus on all those details, which helps me create intricate works of art.”
Along with the letter, Ms Rackham sent the photos of her 96-year-old sculpture and a spreadsheet detailing the 56 species that can be found on Sirdavidsaurus.
These include a pangolin, one of the most trafficked animals in the world, a polar bear, to represent climate change, and a mountain gorilla.
She also included a sketch of a Picathartes gymnocephalus, one of the birds – a white-necked waterfowl – that stood out to her at age 12 when she first watched her Life series. of Birds.
Sir David said in his letter that he was unlikely to travel to Norwich before the track was completed on September 10.
Mrs Rackham now has a Sirdavidsaurus tattoo and the natural historian’s signature.
SIR DAVID’S COMPLETE LETTER
Dear Faye Rackham
Thank you very much for your letter. I am extremely complimented that you chose me – and the animals I encountered – as the subject of your amazing sculpture.
It’s a truly extraordinary concept and an unparalleled compliment. I just wish I could see it. Unfortunately, I don’t see any chance of being able to visit Norwich during its exhibition.
Thank you also for sending me your beautiful – and extremely accurate – painting of Picathartes gymnocephalus. I’m really glad to have it.
Sincerely, thank you and best wishes,
The environment is a recurring theme on this year’s GoGoDiscover journey.
Rachael Butler, a design artist and art teacher from North Norfolk, has used her sculptures to encourage people to have the courage to protect the earth.
His mammoth, Yuuki, at Great Yarmouth Market, depicts our world in two ways, one side showing a positive and enduring world of beautiful creatures and landscapes, while the other shows a world crippled by forest fires, waste and Pollution.
Likewise, his T.rex sculpture, Teo, found at Pulls Ferry, Norwich, also addresses rare species and extinction, such as the Polynesian tree snail and the Ghost Orchid plant.
At the Sainsbury Centre, UEA, visitors can find another of the sculptures that cherishes nature and wildlife, thanks to Norwich-based textile designer Ali Cottrell.
There’s No Planet B is a colorful mammoth with a bold and bright design featuring animals in danger of extinction, as well as at-risk habitats both under the sea and in the jungle.
Trail organizers Break, which offers GoGoDiscover with Wild in Art, have also taken careful steps to improve the trail’s environmental credentials.
Pete Marron, GoGoDiscover Project Manager, said: “We have made a real effort to reduce the number of paper trail maps we produce and encourage people to download the GoGoDiscover trail app instead.
“The app also features a pedometer which encourages people to walk between the sculptures and we have developed a 5km trail route which is ideal for walkers, runners and cyclists to use as a method of staying active while spotting a number of sculptures around the city center of Norwich.
“We used every inch of our GoGoDiscover warehouse and paint space, reducing unnecessary deliveries and carbon miles. About 20pc of our plinths were made from wood, which will be recycled at the end of the trail , and we hope to reuse our concrete pads for other trails in the future.
“Instead of transporting all the sculptures to a farewell event, we will celebrate them on site at a farewell festival across Norwich and Norfolk on the final weekend of the trail.”
The GoGoDiscover 2022 T.rex trail and mammoth sculptures will be on display until Saturday, September 10, when they will be removed for the annual auction to raise additional funds for Break.
The project aims to raise crucial funds for the charity, which improves the lives of children and young people who are on the edge of care, in care and out of care.
You can locate all 79 sculptures by downloading the GoGoDiscover app for £1.79 on your mobile device or by picking up a map – for a suggested donation of £1 – from trail map centers including the Forum, the Royal Arcade, Jarrold, the Pensthorpe gift shop, Duke’s Head Hotel in King’s Lynn, Sea View Café in West Runton and Break shops across the county.
– One of the supporting partners of the GoGoDiscover trail is Chantry Place, the shopping center in Norwich currently hosting six T.rex sculptures as well as 31 of the miniature Breakasaurus T.rex sculptures.
CAN YOU COLLECT THEM ALL?
The GoGoDiscover Norwich and Norfolk 2022 sticker book is on sale now, with 78 stickers to collect, including 12 special shiny stickers.
The 60-page book is priced at £5 and includes full details and trail maps. The book and stickers, priced at £1 for a pack of five, can be purchased from East of England Co-op stores, Langleys Toys and Games and independent retailers.
They can also be purchased online at norfolkstore.co.uk/go-go-discover, where sets of a sticker book and 20 packs are available for just £15.
Throughout the run, each edition of the EDP, Evening News, Great Yarmouth Mercury, Dereham Times, Fakenham & Wells Times, Beccles & Bungay Journal, Lowestoft Journal and North Norfolk News will include a voucher which you can redeem at retailers for a free sticker pack – plus every Saturday edition of the EDP and evening news will include double vouchers.
If you’re looking for trade-ins, head to the GoGoDiscover exhibit in the Forum, where stickers are available in exchange for a donation, along with merchandise and more.