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The Big Hoot 2015 – 31. Re-Tail
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Image by Karen Roe
Temper, aka Arron Bird, is widely recognised as one of the most successful and talented graffiti artists of his generation. He has created a special owl for the Birmingham Retail BID featuring beautifully rendered feathers to form a business suit. The owl has captivating, thoughtful eyes and sits on a magnificent gold footing, embellished with spray cans, a symbol of Temper’s acclaim and international standing in the graffiti scene.

Artist: Temper
Temper, aka Arron Bird, is a successful and talented graffiti artist. After picking up a spray can at the age of 10, the Birmingham-based artist hasn’t looked back.
Growing up in Wolverhampton’s Eastside, Temper was involved in the emergence of graffiti just as the hip-hop culture that accompanied it was making its way from the US to UK shores.
Temper has developed a unique style of graffiti and conceptual art, which allows him to work in illustrative and free-hand ‘traditional’ graffiti, as well as exquisite figurative work reminiscent of the Old Masters.
In 2001 Temper was commissioned by global brand Coca-Cola to create the artwork for their drinks brand Sprite; resulting in art by Temper appearing on over 100 million cans and bottles around Europe in what was the biggest graffiti advertising campaign ever seen.
Evolving from the hip-hop and graffiti art culture which predominated his formative years, he continues to take inspiration from street art, popular culture, comic book art and music. Most importantly, he is inspired by his own experiences, ups and downs; his own journey continues to inform his art and ideas.

Sponsor: Retail Birmingham
Auction Price: £18,000

The Big Hoot captured the imagination of everyone in Birmingham and beyond, with hundreds of thousands of people taking to the streets with their Big Hoot Trail maps to explore the colourful invasion of individually designed owls. Taking in the city’s 10 districts, tourists and residents alike enjoyed their owl adventure, discovering and celebrating the extraordinary creativity produced by many of Birmingham’s artistic community and over 25,000 young people.

The Big Hoot owls went under the hammer on 15 October 2015 at The Big Hoot auction sponsored by Vodafone and we are thrilled to have smashed our target by raising the incredible sum of £508,035!

The money raised from the auction will support Birmingham Children’s Hospital Charity’s £3.65m Star Appeal. This appeal will enable us to create a first of its kind, a Rare Diseases Centre in the UK specifically for children. It will provide co-ordinated care, treatment, support and most importantly hope to children and families living with a rare or undiagnosed condition.

In addition the auction raised £15,000 for G’owl’d by Temper with proceeds going to Edward’s Trust, and £7,800 for Fleet and Free with proceeds going to Birchfield Harriers.

So thank you – we simply couldn’t have done it without you.

Artists have played a major role in The Big Hoot, creating almost 100 owl sculptures. We would like to thank all the artists for their incredible creativity and hard work.
Professional artists from Birmingham, the wider Midlands region and further afield have created extraordinary giant owls that are all unique in style and character and represent the city’s creativity, history and heritage, music, fashion, architecture and attractions.
Birmingham is home to a wealth of artistic and creative individuals and communities and many award-winning and nationally and internationally acclaimed artists. We are delighted with the response from Birmingham’s creative community and are thrilled to work in collaboration with them to transform the streets, squares and parks of the city.
For five months artists have been creating owls in their studios, at home and in The Big Hoot Artists’ Studio at the Custard Factory in Digbeth. Their inspiring and innovative designs have been realised in genres including graffiti, illustration, fine art, graphics, typography, mosaic and new media. They have worked with both community groups and with corporates to realise ideas and create their stunning designs.
The Big Hoot not only provides a high quality and ambitious free public event for families but also supports the creativity of artists and celebrates talent and diversity. The Big Hoot has provided an inspiring relationship between the city and the arts.
The artists have also reached out to communities enabling more people to participate in the arts, to experience working with professional artists and to be inspiring and inspired. From the north to the south of the city residents groups, youth groups and older peoples’ groups have been collaborating with artists to generate ideas, design and create owls for The Big Hoot.
Creativity is everywhere but the opportunity to participate is not. A range of activities have been programmed within Birmingham’s diverse communities and people from the age of 3 – 97 and from wards within the city boundaries have contributed to The Big Hoot and helped make the event extraordinary. Our projects have seen artists working with hundreds of residents and community members including children in looked after care, older peoples’ clubs, young people and residents organisations to design and decorate the owls displayed as part of the 10 week public event.