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Page last updated at 13:09 GMT, Thursday, 30 July 2009 14:09 UK
Giant rabbits hop in to Barnwood

Giant willow rabbit on the Walls roundabout in Barnwood, Gloucester
The three sculptures add to the already famous rabbits on the roundabout

Three giant bunnies are helping to provide entertainment on the Walls roundabout in Barnwood, Gloucester.

All three wicker rabbit sculptures, including one standing at six foot tall, have been created by Brockworth artist Helen Lomberg.

"The two smaller ones are grazing," said Helen, "and the six foot one is actually standing up on its back legs, sniffing the breeze and deciding what to eat next."

Helen was commissioned when Nature in Art recommended her to the City in Bloom committee who were considering the idea for the roundabout.

Helen has created all sorts of mad things in the past but this is her first 6ft willow rabbit.


Giant willow rabbit on the Walls roundabout in Barnwood, Gloucester
The willow is soaked for two weeks before it becomes pliable enough to bend

"I've recently done an exhibition in Brockworth called The Spirit of the Severn with kingfishers, herons, Sabrina on the Bore and things like that."

Helen even used living willow to create a 55ft (16.7m) alligator for a museum in Bath that children could play inside.

To make the willow pliable enough to shape, it is soaked in a big animal trough in her workshop for as long as two weeks.

It absorbs water and becomes bendy enough for Helen to work with. She described the next process:

"I've got a favourite book that I look through called The Ark.

"If it's an animal I usually look through there and get an idea of the shape of the animal I've been asked to do and then I draw lots of them.

"I usually start with lots of measurements and then start by doing lots and lots of hoops - almost like the ribs and the bone structure of the animal - and then gradually fill it in and pad it out so it looks more like the animal I'm trying to create."



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