Birketts’ artist revealed for The Big Hoot Ipswich art trail

23 December 2021

Credit: Lizzy Graham

Leading regional law firm Birketts will once again work with Suffolk-based artist and illustrator Emma Graham to design one of 50 owls on The Big Hoot Ipswich art trail in 2022.

Organised by St Elizabeth Hospice alongside creative partners Wild in Art, The Big Hoot will see oversized owl sculptures visit Ipswich town centre next summer, with each owl sponsored by a local business.

Following in the footsteps of the Pigs Gone Wild and Elmer’s Big Parade art trails, Birketts will be displaying one of these owls outside their office in Princes Street in Ipswich. The designs of each owl will be a closely guarded secret until the launch of the trail on 19 June 2022.

Emma Graham was the artist behind Birketts’ brilliant Elmer in 2019, Elephantom of the Opera, which is why the firm was so pleased to be able to commission Emma to design its Big Hoot for 2022 . A talented illustrator with more than 30 years’ experience, her work is bright, captivating and often features on book covers and in picture books. Emma is a regular artist in art trails across the country also, and has been commissioned in art trails across Suffolk, Cambridge and Kent.

When the trail wraps up in September, the sculptures will be auctioned off in aid of St Elizabeth Hospice, with the money raised going towards providing vital care and support to patients with life-limiting conditions and their families throughout East Suffolk, Great Yarmouth and Waveney.

Grace Kerr, Partner and CSR Chair at Birketts, commented: “It is a pleasure to work with Emma once again – Elephantom of the Opera was a huge hit with our colleagues and followers of the art trail, so we are excited to see what our looks like in the coming months. Our colleagues have voted for our favourite design, so we are anxious to see Emma bring it to life!”

Artist Emma Graham added: “It’s always a privilege to work on the art trails in our region. To know my design is playing its part in raising money for such a worthwhile cause, and enjoyed by tens of thousands of people taking in the trail, feels fantastic. It’s great working with a hands-on sponsor and I am excited to get to work transforming Birketts’ owl into an incredible work of art.”

Liz Baldwin, Corporate and Sponsorship Fundraising Manager at St Elizabeth Hospice, said: “Emma is a wonderful artist and we are so glad she’s taking part in the art trail once again.

“To have Birketts participating as sponsors is fantastic for both the charity and the trail. The disruption of the pandemic is, we hope, ending and the resurgence in fundraising activity over the coming summer will be a much-needed boost for St Elizabeth Hospice.

“We have no doubt that next year’s art trail will follow suit, and we cannot wait to see what all our artists and partners do to make this the best Wild in Art trail yet.”