Kelpies creator’s ‘Leopard’ goes on public show in Aberdeen

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Renowned sculptor Andy Scott has seen his Leopard sculpture go on public show at the prestigious Marischal Square development in Aberdeen.

• READ MORE: Andy Scott: Kelpies sculptor inspired by his Glasgow youth

Leopard by Andy Scott. Picture: Aberdeen City Council

Leopard by Andy Scott. Picture: Aberdeen City Council

The £107million property in the city centre is now home to the steel leopard, after development partners Muse Developments and Aviva Investors commissioned a centrepiece for the city centre regeneration project.

The Leopard sculpture, which was unveiled last month, stands at 5m tall, weighs over two tonnes and sits on top of a 10m high column. It has been inspired by symbols on Aberdeen City Council’s historic coat of arms. It is now open to the public between 8am and 6pm each day.

Scott, a graduate of Glasgow School of Art, has in excess of eighty projects across the UK and internationally, but is best known for the multi-award winning Kelpies - pair of 30-metre high, 300-ton horse heads, sited in Falkirk.

He said: “I’ve worked on this sculpture for over a year in the studio and it’s been very demanding. There are literally thousands of steel fragments, all individually welded to create the form of the artwork. It now stands five metres tall, weighs just over two tons, and will sit proudly atop a ten metre high steel column. I hope it brings a real presence and sense of drama to the atrium space of Marischal Square.”

Leopard by Andy Scott. Picture: Aberdeen City Council

Leopard by Andy Scott. Picture: Aberdeen City Council

It is hoped his first piece of artwork of this scale in the Granite City will help boost the city’s tourism economy.

At the unveiling Aberdeen City Council city centre masterplan lead councillor Marie Boulton said: “At the outset of the Marischal Square project, we identified that public art would play a vital role in attracting both business and visitors to the prestigious new development, so it’s fantastic not only we have this art, but it’s also an amazing sculpture by Andy Scott.

“Andy’s work around Scotland is so well known and so it’s brilliant that his first major work in Aberdeen is here at Marischal Square and will be open to the public.

“His sculpture of a leopard is extremely impressive and is very appropriate for Aberdeen as leopards are a symbol of the city, featuring in our coat of arms after legend says they were bestowed as a gift by King James I for underwriting his expenses while he was held captive in England.

“We look forward to this contemporary new leopard in Aberdeen being enjoyed by residents and visitors in our beautiful city.”