Body Casting Olympians
Sculptor Louise Giblin and five British sporting legends, including 2012 Olympic favourite
Beth Tweddle MBE, raise funds for charity
World-leading body cast sculptor, Louise Giblin, has been getting her hands on some of
the fittest bodies on earth to raise funds for the brain injury charity, Headfirst.
In 2011, five British Olympians modelled for Louise Giblin, Associate of the Royal British
Society of Sculptors (ARBS). ‘Body Casting Olympians’ – displaying photographs and
selling sculptures, drawings and bronze plaques - will be launched in May 2012 at the
prestigious Mall Galleries, two days after the Olympic torch relay begins.
Beth Tweddle MBE
being body cast
The Private View, on May 22, will be attended by Kriss Akabusi MBE, Paralympian Darren Leach, Cheryl Baker
and Guy Portelli (the Dragons’ Den sculptor) among others.
Beth Tweddle in
Kriss Akabusi in cold
Dame Kelly in cold
Darren Leach at
cold cast bronze
cold cast aluminiun
The Olympian Series (above - work in progress) backs are carved into a stripped, stylised musculature while
the fronts’ detailed relief design displays the Union Flag plus imagery relating to the ‘greatest achievement’
chosen by the sportsmen and women:
1. Beth Tweddle MBE – 7 times British, 6 times European and 3 times World Champion - Britain’s most
successful ever gymnast and strong 2012 contender, chose her 2009 World win at London’s O2 Arena.
2. Kriss Akabusi MBE – Olympic medallist, World, European and Commonwealth Champion, chose his
1984 silver hurdles medal at the Los Angeles Olympics.
3. Dame Kelly Holmes – former Sports Personality of the Year, chose Classical Athens to celebrate her
‘double gold’ triumph in the birthplace of the ancient Olympics.
4. Sally Gunnell OBE – the only female runner to concurrently be gold medallist for Olympic, World,
European and Commonwealth chose her Olympic gold in Barcelona.
5. Darren Leach – 6’7’’ sight-impaired Paralympian medallist swimmer, winner of World and European
Championship gold medals chose his four Sydney Paralympic medals to commemorate.
Each of the athletes is to receive one of their £9,960 cold cast sculptures to keep or sell to raise money for
charity, with others from the series being sold with a proportion going to Headfirst.
Beth Tweddle intends to sell her torso to raise money for charity:
“It was an amazing experience with some funny memories, these and photos of the finished piece will be
treasured forever; I like the fact that my achievements can make a real contribution towards this worthwhile
charity,” she says.
Kriss Akabusi, who will be speaking at the launch in May and is having his image cast in bronze, found his
experience involved a little more sacrifice:
“Having my chest shaved as smooth as a baby’s bottom and being stuck in a cast for an hour or so are a small
price to pay to have my body image preserved for time and eternity.”
Louise Giblin adds: “I’m impressed by people who commit to goals with determination as this makes them
powerful; these Olympians are awe-inspiring both physically and mentally. London 2012 is an opportunity for
me to work with extraordinary people, celebrate British success and to help raise money for a great cause.”
The production and exhibition of work is broadcast on the sculptor’s BodyCastSculptor YouTube channel. This
channel has logged over 530,000 views since commencing last July. Dame Kelly Holmes’s clay sculpture tour
can be viewed at:
The body cast sculptor is now recruiting models for her Living Legend Series 2014. She commenced December
2011 by head casting former Cabinet Minister, the broadcaster Michael Portillo. Her work has been shown in
London, New York, Hong Kong, Scotland and across the South of England; it has doubled in value over the past
3 years and is now being collected both in the UK and by overseas investors.
Body Casting Olympians, Mall Galleries, The Mall, London SW1 +44 (0) 20 7930 6844 21-26 May 2012
Olympian Series, Saffron Art Gallery, Battle +44 (0) 1424 772 130 21 May-2 June 2012
Body Casting Olympians, Saffron Art Gallery, Battle +44 (0) 1424 772 130 27 July-Aug 11 2012
Olympian to sculpture – Kriss Akabusi MBE being body cast, the cast, the finished clay piece, the cold cast aluminium