These painted cows were part of Derry’s
Ebrington Square was formerly Ebrington Army Barracks. Under the guidance of Ilex (the local Urban Regeneration Company) it has been transformed into a public open space. You can see Derry City centre in the distance across the river. The intention is that the former military buildings will be put to cultural uses as museums, art galleries and studios.
Each of the cows in the parade was painted by a different artist. Each artist was paired with a community group and worked with them to identify a theme.
One of the cows in this panorama was created by Something Special
a music and arts education centre for adults with learning disabilities.
They named it Moolinton. Its theme is "our musical heritage". They painted it under the guidance of artist Rory Harron. It depicts a scene of Derry's City walls, incorporating into the stone work the names of the musical heroes of the members of Something Special. The heroes are a diverse group which included: The Undertones, Paul Brady, Snow Patrol and even The Ulster Orchestra!
So this piece of visual culture is a celebration of popular musical culture.
The other cow, is one of two, created by the Pennyburn Play Trail
under the guidance of artists John and Trisha Deery. Its theme is "The future"
and amid its bright colours are scenes and slogans representing the aspirations of the children from the Play Trail.
The global Cow Parade
project is said to be the largest participative art project in the world. Having been seen by 300m people world wide it certainly has a claim to that title! In fact there are many cow parades. The organisers provide plain white fiberglass cows - mostly in three characteristic stances - and artists and community groups in a local area come together to decorate their cow in a way that highlights a locally relevant theme.
During the summer of 2012 there were twelve, or more of these cows in Ebrington Square and a few others scattered around Derry.