The exhibition will see a herd of almost one hundred 1.5 metre brightly coloured elephants – which have been specially decorated and hand painted and will be exhibited as a herd in key locations throughout Bangkok, starting on 1st December 2015 and ending on January 29th 2016.
The first major Elephant Parade was held in Rotterdam in the Netherlands in 2007 and has since been exhibited in cities across the world including London, Singapore, Amsterdam, Milan and Hong Kong. Elephant Parade Bangkok will be a first for Thailand and the only one for the city.
The event was originally created after founder Marc Spits and his son Mike visited the Friends of the Asian Elephant hospital in Lampang, Thailand, which treats sick and injured elephants. There they saw Mosha, a baby elephant who lost her leg after stepping on a landmine when only seven months old and was the first elephant to receive a prosthetic limb. She is fitted with a new leg every year, and each time must learn to walk all over again. Mosha features in each Elephant Parade exhibition and will have a specially Thai themed painted prosthetic leg for the Bangkok Parade.
Artists from all walks of life have been busy designing their elephants, each an original piece of art to help paint a brighter future for the country’s national animal. Famous supporters of Elephant Parade Bangkok include: Hangover 2 star Nirut Sirichanya; Furious 7 star Tony Jaa; Designer Paul Smith; World Number One DJ, Hardwell; Miss Thailand World, Sirinya Bishop; Artists Elizabeth Romhild, Elsie Evans and Nancy Chandler, Sculptor Gavin Fifield and a wide range of Thai celebrities and artists.
In February 2016 a selection of elephants from the parade will be auctioned off at a charity gala dinner at Anantara Siam Bangkok, with the proceeds going to the Golden Triangle Asian Elephant Foundation who in turn will select and fund a range of sustainable programmes that benefit the elephants of Thailand, including Wildlife Alliance, Freeland, WildAid, Think Elephants and Thai Elephant Therapy Project.
The Golden Triangle Asian Elephant Foundation (GTAEF) was set up in 2006 to improve the plight of Thailand’s elephants, and has since been diversified to include welfare projects that incorporate broader philanthropic and cultural objectives with unprecedented success.