Moove over Stay Puft Marshmallow man, ‘Watermoo’ is now in town! This beautiful heifer was lovingly created by professional artist Stacey Allan and a group of young people with cancer from the Royal Marsden Hospital. She’s currently grazing on the concourse at London Waterloo station and forms part of CowParade, the world’s largest public art event which is seeing over 60 brightly decorated fibreglass cows placed in popular landmarks across London and Surrey.
Artist and creator of Watermoo, Stacey Allan comments; “Watermoo is bright and colourful and inspired by nature. I wanted to make something eye-catching and uplifting that would make people smile! A flight of swallows arcs across her back, and they are swooping over patches of native Surrey flowers, look underneath and you’ll discover a belly-full of wild orchids and bluebells!”
The idea is that each cow is ‘Sponsored’ by a business, school or charity and decorated by an artist, then auctioned off for charities in the autumn. Cows can be located and virtually collected using a specially designed app. Think ‘Pokémon Go’ but with cows! ‘Cow Spotters’ can discover lots about each cow, win rosettes, take part in quizzes and more. Those who find all the cows will be entered into a prize draw to win a luxury Kuoni holiday for two to Mauritius!
Money raised at auction from Watermoo will support CLIC Sargent, the UK’s leading cancer charity for children and young people. The artist, Stacey worked in collaboration with a group of children from the Royal Marsden Hospital to create the butterflies that adorn Watermoo. Stacey continues; “The butterflies which decorate two of her legs were designed by a group of talented children, It was fun to run a workshop and see the wonderfully creative butterfly art that the children (and their mums!) came up with. They were a pleasure to paint and Watermoo wears all of their designs with pride.”
CLIC Sargent Director of Fundraising Rachel Kirby-Rider from CLIC Sargent comments: “CowParade Surrey is a great initiative and we’ve really enjoyed being part of it. The children really enjoyed working with Stacey to design their butterflies. We think Watermoo looks fabulous and looks brilliant on display at Waterloo.
“We’re delighted that the cow will be auctioned to raise money for CLIC Sargent. The money raised from the sale will go towards our vital work supporting children and young people with cancer, and their families. We provide a range of support from the point of diagnosis onwards through our financial grants, social workers, nurses and free accommodation near hospitals.
“We’re also really grateful to our charity partner Network Rail for giving us the opportunity to show off Watermoo to so many of their customers at Waterloo Station.”
One of the young people involved, Ciara Lewis, who is being supported by CLIC Sargent comments: “It was great to be given the opportunity to take part in creating ‘Watermoo’. Time in hospital can move slowly at times and as a creative person, having a focus like this made the time fly for me. Plus, it’s great to know that our artwork will be seen at London Waterloo by hundreds of people!”
Surrey based business Briars Group have sponsored Watermoo, Kate Jolly, CEO comments; “We like to consider ourselves to be an extension of our clients’ businesses here at Briars so we were delighted to be involved in the Cow Parade. We are immensely proud to be able to sponsor our very own entry named Watermoo, wonderfully painted by talented local Surrey artist Stacey Allan. We’re thrilled with the result and delighted to see Watermoo at Waterloo where she is proudly bringing attention to the fantastic work of CLIC Sargent in supporting young people with cancer.”
Jess Skelton, Network Rail Sustainability Specialist comments; “Waterloo is Britain’s busiest railway station, with around 2m people travelling to and through it each week. ‘Watermoo’ is a fantastic way for Network Rail to help raise awareness of our charity of choice CLIC Sargent and the amazing work they do to connect families touched by cancer, keeping them together and connecting them with the support they need.”
Get ‘cow spotting’ this summer – simply click here to download the app.