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Public art celebrates city’s links with the fox

Published on Tuesday, June 14, 2022

The fox sculpture on the top of the Corn Exchange wall

THERE’S a new addition to Leicester’s Green Dragon Square – but only those who scour the skyline will notice the vulpine visitor on the top of the wall at the rear of the Corn Exchange.

Created by an award-winning artist, the larger-than-life crouching fox is the second in a trio of fox sculptures commissioned by the city council.

The first sculpture – a life-size replica of a fox on the move – was installed on the roof of the King Richard III Visitor Centre in November, while the final one will be installed on a flat roof at the LCB Depot on Rutland Street later this year.

Leicester City Council hopes that the trio of sculptures – all shaped from steel wire – will create new talking points at the three popular city centre locations.

City Mayor Peter Soulsby said: “These new sculptures will complement the investment we’ve made in Leicester’s streets and spaces in recent years.

“Art installations and other design features are important elements of our public realm and help create attractive spaces that people can interact with and enjoy.

“These charming foxes, created by a very talented artist, are a welcome addition to the streetscape and I hope people will enjoy looking out for them in Leicester city centre.”

Artist Candice Bees – whose sculpture of an urban fox won the David Shepherd Wildlife Artist of the Year award in 2016 – said: “The fox is synonymous with Leicester so I was delighted to be commissioned to create this trio of sculptures.

“Each fox takes me around six to eight weeks to complete – and each one is completely unique. I start by making a simple armature that represents the fox’s skeleton and then use thick wire to create a basic muscle structure. Finer wires are then used to model the outer skin and fur. This is the most time-consuming bit, as each hair is represented by a single strand of wire, woven through the sculpture to ensure that the final piece is as realistic as possible.

“I hope that both locals and visitors will have fun, spotting something beautiful and unexpected on a city centre rooftop.”

The sculptures have been funded as part of the Connecting Leicester project – the City Mayor’s long-term programme to better connect Leicester’s places of interest and create a more attractive environment for pedestrians and cyclists.

 

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Picture caption: The new fox looks out over Leicester’s Green Dragon Square from the top of the wall at the rear of the Corn Exchange