The Tusk Rhino Trail is a London-wide art installation, created to raise awareness of the endangered African rhino. Land Rover talk about its sculpture, put up this Monday in Trafalgar Square.
A unique 1.2m-long rhino sculpture was towed into Trafalgar Square on Monday, in support of the Tusk Rhino Trail, to aid conservation projects for this precious, endangered, African, species. The initiative involves 21 sculptures donated and decorated by leading figures from the worlds of art and design installed at prominent locations across the capital.
Towing the sculpture into this particular location was a Land Rover Discovery SUV, as this motor manufacturer has been collaborating with Tusk, The Duke of Edinburgh’s charity, for more than 15 years to preserve the habitat of the rhinoceros, in remote African places.
This particular art installation uses specialist paint techniques from Land Rover’s state-of-the-art manufacturing process to achieve a highly durable liquid metal finish.
Gerry McGovern, Chief Design Officer, Land Rover, said: “I wanted to celebrate the magnificence of this unique creature, so my rhino is covered in a chrome finish. The idea being that because of the highly reflective nature of chrome it would be seen from a long distance, consequently creating awareness of the plight of this animal in Africa. The red painted horn signifies the absurdity of this beautiful animal being hunted for such a small part of its overall being.”
Traditionally chrome has been used on vehicles to communicate prestige. Land Rover has developed an innovative and sustainable process to create a modern interpretation of chrome using a paint coating called spray chrome.
Inspired by the dye treatments conservationists use to protect rhinos from ivory traders, the horn of the Land Rover sculpture has been painted red, highlighting the plight of this endangered creature. White ivory has huge value to poachers and one solution is to inject rhino horns with a dye, making them less appealing to hunters.
To raise awareness of the plight of the rhino, you will find 21 installations popping up all over London. culminating in the celebration of World Rhino Day on Saturday, 22nd September. Each of the 21 rhinos will then be sold to raise funds for Tusk projects across Africa at an event hosted by leading auction house Christie’s on Tuesday, 9th October.