New artwork at Oxford Covered Market aims to raise awareness for endangered animals

Published: Friday, 13th July 2018

A series of Banksy-style art pieces have been installed at the Covered Market to raise awareness for endangered animals.

The five images – featuring a jaguar, a blue whale, a sun bear, an elephant, and a bee – aim to inspire a conversation about the wider impact of species extinction.

The artwork is installed at five locations around the Covered Market, and is a small part of the City Council’s wider marketing campaign and investment in the historic market.

Each animal in the artwork is surrounded by other creatures that are reliant on that species for survival.

The art makes the point that losing just one species can have a knock-on and domino effect on the wider ecosystem.

The pieces were created by Devon Galpin Clarke and Diana Garcia and were first displayed in Paris in June.

The artwork is part of a wildlife conservation campaign – known as What we Lose – and will also form the basis for an illustrated coffee table book.

Last weekend (7/7), Oxford City Council teamed up with the Story Museum and traders to bring characters from Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland to the Covered Market as part of the annual Alice’s Day celebrations.

Oxford City Council, which owns and operates the Covered Market, last year announced plans to invest £1.6m into the market to make improvements, including to the roof, public conveniences, signage and external paving.

The Covered Market, which first opened in the 1774, features more than 50 traders selling food, gifts, shoes, fashion, flowers and jewellery, and provides a unique showcase for the very best in local crafts, food and drink.

Councillor Mary Clarkson, Executive Board Member for Culture and City Centre, said: “This exhibition of striking and evocative artwork not only raises awareness for an important cause, but also showcases our intention to offer more events and activities in the Covered Market to help draw people into the jewel in the crown of Oxford’s retail offer.

“Following the opening of Westgate Oxford, footfall across the city centre is up by more than 7% on this time last year. The City Council continues to work closely with traders to encourage these new visitors to sample the independent, quirky and multi-faceted appeal of the Covered Market.”