New public art for Kingston town centre
Party Animal by Alex R T Davies MRSS announced as winner of Kingston Sculpture Trail public vote
Party Animal by Alex R T Davies MRSS has been announced today as the winner of the Kingston Sculpture Trail and will become a permanent feature in Kingston town centre, with the artist receiving a £10k prize. The artwork is a fun and interactive bronze goat sculpture which stands proudly with a street cone on its back, inviting the viewer to touch and even sit on the piece.
Alex R T Davies MRSS (pictured below) is a locally-based sculptor who runs a fine art foundry, Milwyn Casting Ltd, in West Molesey. Davies was the creator of two sculptures on the trail, Party Animal and The Kiss, both part of a series of works titled ‘Unwanted Monuments’.
The Kingston Sculpture Trail, organised through a partnership of Canbury Community Trust, Kingston Council, Kingston First and Kingston University, ran from August to October 2021 and comprised of seven temporary sculptures. Local residents and visitors were asked to vote for their favourite and almost 1700 people responded to the voting survey with Party Animal winning 51% of the vote, showing the strength of feeling for this particular piece.
Party Animal will be installed in a suitable location in the town centre for all to enjoy in early 2022.
Alex R T Davies MRSS, artist and creator of ‘Party Animal’, said:
“It’s been a great experience being involved in the Kingston Sculpture Trail, made all the better by the positive feedback I have had and of course winning the vote. It is a real honour to have a sculpture chosen to be permanently sited in Kingston, a town that I have visited many times growing up in Surrey, having worked there as a teenager, to now having my own business and workshop so close.”
David Mach RA, artist and creator of iconic Kingston sculpture ‘Out of Order’ (1989) said:
“A great choice, and good to have a local artist. This is Kingston’s version of the boar statue near the Uffizi Gallery in Florence. The nose of “Porcellino” is golden from the number of tourists rubbing it for luck; the cone on the back of Alex’s goat is going to be just as shiny. It’s going to be a very popular piece.”
Kirsten Henly, Chief Executive of Kingston First said:
“Announcing the winner of the first-ever Kingston Sculpture Trail is a proud moment for all the partners who helped bring this exciting, collaborative project to life. The trail brought a wealth of public art to Kingston and created new experiences for visitors and residents alike, building on our shared vision for the town centre’s streets and spaces. The incredible legacy of the trail is this brilliant piece of permanent public artwork which will be enjoyed for many years to come. Congratulations to the artist and thank you to everyone who visited the trail and voted for their favourite sculpture.”
Councillor Rebekah Moll, Portfolio Holder for Culture at Kingston Council said:
“Thank you to everyone who took part and voted for the amazing sculptures, and to the artists behind them. The Kingston Sculpture Trail reinforces the Council’s commitment to supporting arts and culture as an integral part of our wider economic recovery, and we are delighted that Party Animal will be around for visitors and residents to enjoy.”
Mandy Ure, Dean at Kingston School of Art said:
“Alex R T Davies’ ‘Party Animal’ is a worthy winner of the public vote, a fantastic addition to the landscape of Kingston and a sculpture the local community and visitors can enjoy for years to come. It’s been a real pleasure working in partnership with Kingston First, the Royal Borough of Kingston and community groups, and for my colleagues from Kingston School of Art to be able to contribute. Our students have also enjoyed opportunities to take their work out into public settings in previous projects and I hope there is further collaboration in the future.”