Commissioned in 2015 by Aardman Animations for ‘Shaun in the city’, a public art trail taking place in Bristol and London, also celebrating the launch of the new movie. The design was inspired by the texture and volume of Shaun’s fleece as well as his colourful character. The fleece was covered in 16,500 glass droplets which resembled smarties and the face and legs in thousands of classic black mosaic tiles. As everyone’s favourite smartie tends to be orange, I added a pop of vibrant orange detail. The design was sponsored by Hargreaves Lansdown and was located outside their offices in Bristol for the duration of the trail. I also got to design the masthead for the Bristol Post, a first for me! Named ‘Dolly’, it picked up an award for ‘best fleece’ and the sculpture went onto sell at auction for £8,500.
Gedling Borough Council wanted to celebrate the twinning history between Gedling and Vanoeuvre Les Nancy in France. They commissioned a mosaic of the crest to feature in one of their raised beds in the twinning garden at Arnot Hill park, Nottinghamshire. The stone base was cut specifically to fit and match the existing stonework in the raised wall bed.
In 2013 I was selected from more than 500 International artists to individually create a sculpture of the popular Wallace and Gromit character for Aardman Animations. 70 sculpture designs were chosen, many by well known artists including Raymond Briggs, Axel Scheffler, Sir Peter Blake, and Pauls Smith to name but a few.
My design was inspired by the golden Buddhas in Thailand and also the 2012 Olympics when post boxes were painted in gold in the hometowns of medal winning athletes. I wanted to create something highly decorative with a prestigious feel and there’s something special about the colour gold! Mosaic is a tactile medium, I wanted to encourage people’s instincts to touch the work and explore the detail and sense of movement. I used over 10,000 pieces of mosaic pieces and 3 different types of gold coloured glass to create an abstract design with pattern and movement. There are 1000 pieces alone in the gold mirror studded collar!
Golden Gromit was in situ outside the Victoria Rooms in Bristol for 10 weeks, was used on the cover of the official marketing brochures and went onto sell at auction for £30,000 raising funds for the Grand Appeal Charity, Bristol children’s hospital.
Commissioned by Nottingham City Council for the Nottingham Hoodwinked public art trail 2018. My design ‘Royal Robin Redbreast, sponsored by Castle Rock Brewery was inspired by the heritage of royalty at Nottingham Castle. William The Conqueror first built the castle in 1067 and Royal residents have included Henry II and Richard The Lionheart. I wanted to create a Robin with a rich, regal feel with golden wings, a jewelled Robin Hood style crown and quiver of golden arrows. Every Robin has an individual red breast so I wanted a lot of the detail to go into this area. I worked entirely freehand creating lots of swirls and patterns in different shades of red glass to create the effect.
The sculpture took over 200 hours to complete placing more than 10,000 individual pieces of mosaic. It was voted the most popular sculpture on the trail and went onto raise the highest bid at auction for Nottinghamshire Hospice.
“We’re really excited for people to see this beautiful mosaic robin as part of the Hoodwinked trail. Our congratulations and thanks go to Julie who has worked painstakingly on it for months, from the planning stages to hand-cutting pieces of mosaic and getting every detail right. It’s a stunning, colourful and intricate sculpture and we know it’ll look amazing outside Nottingham railway station” Lewis Townsend, Head of Marketing Castle Rock