London’s Elephant Parade: The Elephants Are Coming to Town!

Please note this blog is no longer active. This post was last updated 6 years, 11 months ago and may contain out of date prices, opening times, links and information. Go to for the lastest visitor information for London.

If you love street art, good causes and animals, you’re in for a treat this summer.

From May to June, London will see an innovative fundraising campaign take to the streets in the form of an Elephant Parade.

Two hundred and fifty life-sized baby elephants will take to the streets of our capital, all hand-painted by an assortment of artists and designers.

Artists taking part include:

  • Marc Quinn
  • Diane Von Furstenberg
  • Alice Temperley
  • Lulu Guinness
  • Julien Macdonald
  • John Rocha
  • Jack Vettriano

After being displayed in all their finery at various London attractions, the elephants will then head to one of London’s great green spaces together as an exhibition. They’ll then be auctioned off to (very careful!) new owners at Sotheby’s in July. The auction aims to raise more than £1m: the money goes to 15 UK conservation charities working in Asia.

I chatted to a very cheery Lulu Guinness at the launch this morning. She’s very passionate about the cause, and seemed to have had a ball creating the design for her elephant.

“At first, I’d her in these kisses, but it ended up looking like it had chicken pox or something,” she told me. “So it was back to carefully placing the blots; it needed to be kept simple. I hope people walk all the way around it, to get the full effect of the sculpture. I want people to think she’s been smothered in kisses, like a form of adoration.”

I asked Lulu if she minded which part of London her elephant went to. “Not at all. I’m not that complex! I’ve recently had a pop-up shop in Carnaby, and I think the people there have requested my elephant for Carnaby Street, which is lovely. I think she’ll be great there.”

Look out for Lulu’s elephant, plus 249 others dotted around London come May! Check out more Elephant Parade launch photos on flickr.


  1. Jenny says:

    Looking forward to seeing the elephants brightening up London over the summer.

  2. Sue says:

    Ah, we had these in Norwich a couple of years ago, fab, made our city a wonderful place to be, everyone, young and old, followed the little trail maps. As well as famous people local communities and schools decorated their own to be on show too. Come back Ellies we miss you!