Photo: David Yarrow Photography.

A global celebration of African lions and the people that live alongside them, through exceptional art

/PRNewswire/ — The African Community and Conservation Foundation (ACCF) and Tusk are pleased to announce the launch of the U.S. Tusk Lion Trail, which is part of a high-profile international art installation in support of African people and conservation. Following the huge success and popularity of the Tusk Rhino Trail in 2018, the British charity (Tusk) will launch over 45 life sized lion sculpture trail onto the streets in iconic locations worldwide, on the 10th August 2021 (World Lion Day).

The initiative is being supported by internationally acclaimed artists and designers, who have each been asked to uniquely design/paint a lion sculpture for public display. Each sculpture will highlight the magnificence of lions, threats to their existence and the people and solutions working for their survival – raising awareness for conservation efforts across the world. Internationally recognized faces including Rolling Stones guitarist, Ronnie Wood, wildlife photographer, David Yarrow, artists Ian Davenport, Gavin Turk and David Mach, rugby legend Richie McCaw, American fashion designer Donna Karan, and actors Deborra-Lee Furness and Noel Fielding have all collaborated to craft their own unique pieces of art. Each U.S. lion sculpture has been generously supported by an ACCF or Tusk partner or supporter.

The lion sculptures will be displayed to the general public at a selection of iconic sites around the world including The Hamptons – New York, a number of UK cities (London, Edinburgh and Bristol), Sydney, Wellington and Nairobi, from 10th August until the end of September 2021. The Hamptons will be home to 12 individually curated life-sized lion sculptures, the art installation will encourage visitors to follow the ‘trails’ via easy-to-use physical and digital maps, allowing them to ‘collect lions’ as they go. This fun, interactive experience is the perfect activity for families.

Fashion icon, Donna Karan says “My experience in Africa has changed my life. Honoring Africa, its people, and animals is a part of what I do through Urban Zen. Urban Zen’s mission is to provide and support the preservation of culture, healthcare, education and to bring calm in the chaos around the world. As part of my passion, it’s an honor to work with the U.S. Tusk-ACCF Lion Trail, focusing on Africa, to connect designers and artists to preserve wildlife and local communities.”

Following the interactive sculpture exhibition, the unique works of art that have been displayed across The Hamptons will be auctioned at an event held in conjunction with ACCF at The Wölffer Estate in The Hamptons, on August 27th. The UK lion sculptures will then be auctioned in London by leading global auction house Bonhams, on November 9th. Three years ago, Tusk raised £750,000 with its Rhino Trail and is hoping to surpass this total by taking the art installation global. Funds raised at the auction and through public donations will support the work of ACCF, Tusk and our partners in protecting species and empowering communities across Africa.

DHL is the global lead partner for the Tusk Lion Trail, which is curated by Chris Westbrook and co-sponsored by ISPS Handa. The U.S. Lion Trail in The Hamptons and New York is being organized in partnership with the African Community and Conservation Foundation (ACCF)

U.S. Lion Trail sponsors include: The Padded Wagon, Bonhams Auction House, Wölffer Estate Vineyard, Duck Walk Vineyard, Alli McCartney – Alignment Partners at UBS Financial Services, Dr. Taryn Marie Stejskal – Resilience Leadership Institute, EarthX, Emso Asset Management, Evan Pollack, Graylish LLC, James Davies and Alex Giannou, Make Everything Workshop, Ninety One, Rhonda Vetere, Sandi Young – Butterfly Effect, Teneo, the Todd Family, and Tutto il Giorno.

The King of Beasts

Big cats, the ‘King of Beasts’, lions have been central to human culture since our very evolution. Once roaming most of Africa and parts of Asia and Europe, the population of lions is estimated to have declined by as much as 50% over the past 25 years. The most recent estimates put the total population of lions at approximately 22,500, occupying less than 8% of their historic range. There are now fewer wild lions left than rhinos.

The future of the African lion lies in the ability of lions and humans to coexist. At the top of the food chain, lions only face threats that stem from human actions: habitat loss and fragmentation, prey depletion and human-lion conflict. More recently they have also been poached for their body parts (especially claws, teeth, and bones) for use in alternative medicine, predominantly in the Far East.

As well as protecting some of the lions’ greatest strongholds and mitigating human-lion conflict, Tusk and ACCF invest in initiatives working with local communities to catalyze innovation, utilize technology, change attitudes, and provide economic stability and empowerment.

More information about the event can be found here: https://us.tuskliontrail.com.