Page last updated at 15:57 GMT, Monday, 22 March 2010
Art turns city into dragon's den

By Selma Chalabi
BBC South East Wales

One of Newport's Superdragon
Stephanie Roberts is the first artist to design a Superdragon

Imagine the city of Newport littered not with rubbish, but with a wing of human sized fibreglass dragons.

This is not some surreal Dali dream - from mid-July anyone passing through the streets of Newport's city centre and suburbs may indeed come face to face with a dragon.

There will be 50 in total, each about two metres (6ft) tall and 35kg (5st 5lb) in weight. In addition there will be 48 smaller dragons.

The event, known as Superdragons, is being hosted by Newport council and will last 14 weeks as part of the celebrations for the 2010 Ryder Cup golf tournament.

The dragons themselves have been designed by Chris Wilkinson of Wild in Art and were produced at a factory in Poland.

They're now in storage, and are awaiting their final transformation in to Newport Superdragons.

The council have put a call out for artists and community groups to submit designs with the deadline expiring on Friday.

Project co-ordinator Florence Martellini said: "We hope the dragons will bring adventure, colour and life to the streets of Newport and will stop people in their tracks and get them talking."

Gopenguins in Liverpool
Liverpool recently held a similar event with penguins

Anything goes. Liverpool recently did something similar with penguins. Designs ranged from Girl Power penguin to Towering Penguin featuring a large Eiffel Tower, and Global Warning penguin with a world map.

The smaller dragons will be sent to all the primary schools in Newport and each school will produce their own design.

Not only is the project a way of displaying creative talent, it's also intended to remind people of the city's gems.

Some dragons will be strategically placed to highlight historical or architectural interest - the aim being that even residents will feel like visitors in their own city.

At the end of its 14 week run, the dragon den will be disassembled and each piece will be auctioned off to raise money for the wildlife charity Bornfree.

Audio slideshow: Superdragons
20 Jul 10 |  Arts & Culture
Designs revealed for Go Penguins
18 Sep 09 |  Arts & Culture
O'Grady creates penguin artwork
09 Nov 09 |  Merseyside


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