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Imagine exhibitions to develop a new outdoor troll travelling exhibition

Trolls by Thomas Dambo. Photo credit: Thomas Dambo / Imagine Exhibitions


The new touring experience will bring Dambo’s popular folklore-inspired troll sculptures made out of reclaimed materials to outdoor venues throughout the world.
ATLANTA, GA, April 1, 2021 – Imagine Exhibitions, Inc., a leader in global traveling entertainment and immersive experiences, today announced a new partnership with Denmark-based recycle artist, Thomas Dambo. The partnership will include the development of an all-new touring exhibition featuring Dambo’s signature troll sculptures built from reclaimed materials. The outdoor exhibition will build upon the tales surrounding the more than 75 giant trolls (and counting!) that Dambo has already created, while also telling an original story in and of itself. The experience will fuse fairytales, whimsy, and incredible art installations to inspire visitors to explore the importance of nature, climate change and other complex issues related to our relationship with the planet, nature, and animals.
Dambo is an artist and recycle activist based in Denmark who carries the title of the world’s most prominent “recycle artist.” He is best known for his colossal troll sculptures that range in height from 16 to 50 feet and ‘live’ as semi-permanent installations in parks, greenspaces, industrial parks, and in other site-specific locations around the world. Each folklore-inspired sculpture is imbued with expression and character and is built entirely from scrap materials like wooden pallets, fallen branches, and twigs sourced from the location of the installation. Driven by a mission to inspire people to explore our relationship with the planet, many of Dambo’s works have an associated folk tale written by Dambo himself that addresses a complex problem of our world in an approachable, fun way and which ties in with the overarching story of all Dambo’s trolls.

In the Spring of 2018, Dambo unveiled a temporary exhibition of six of his trolls at The Morton Arboretum just outside of Chicago, IL. The exhibition was an enormous success, leading to the park’s two highest attended years in its nearly 100-year history. 1.26 million people visited the park in 2018 during the run of Troll Hunt, with the first month of the exhibition clocking the most visitors the arboretum had ever had in a 30-day period (164,000 visitors). However, after a more than 2-year run, the exhibition closed in January 2021, despite a petition from visitors to “save the trolls.” The dismantling of these trolls represented a disappointing end for Dambo’s work, sending the materials he originally saved from the trash exactly there: into the trash. Throwing away the sculptures was contrary to the message and spirit of his work: to inspire creative re-use of materials. Seeing an opportunity for Dambo’s sculptures to both meet the incredible audience demand as well as to honor the concept of responsible re-use, Imagine Exhibitions President & CEO Tom Zaller reached out to Dambo to discuss the idea of a touring exhibition.

“Once I saw Thomas Dambo’s giant trolls, I was instantly inspired and delighted,” says Zaller. “Then, when I learned more about his mission to use his materials, methods, sculptures, and associated fairy tales to tell a story about conservation and climate change, I immediately knew that I wanted to work with him to develop a touring experience. Thomas’ vision aligns so well with the missions of zoos, arboretums, and like-minded visitor attractions—the traveling trolls exhibition will be a wonderful opportunity to surprise, delight, and inspire visitors around the world.”
Imagine Exhibitions has been instrumental in creating, producing, and marketing some of the world’s most popular exhibitions and attractions seen by more than 40 million people. Under Zaller’s leadership, Imagine’s team consists of the industry’s most talented experts with unrivaled experience in sales, marketing, design, operations, and production. Imagine will work with Dambo to develop the trolls traveling exhibition with the goal of touring to zoos, gardens, arboretums, and like-minded outdoor visitor attractions. Imagine will also sell commissions of Dambo’s work as individual permanent and semi-permanent installations.

Dambo says he is also looking forward to working with Imagine Exhibitions, “I’m constantly working with—so to speak—stretching the materials as far as possible, elevating the life and value of recycled materials through art. Doing a traveling exhibition together with Imagine Exhibitions makes so much sense. It is a brilliant way to spread the message about recycling further and to have shorter exhibitions without turning the sculptures into trash again. Together, I’m sure we’ll bring a lot of good energy to the world—I’m looking forward to this adventure!”

The Imagine Exhibitions sales team is currently discussing the exhibition with potential host venues. To learn more about bringing the trolls traveling exhibition to your outdoor venue, contact sales@imagineexhibitions.com.

About Imagine Exhibitions

Imagine Exhibitions is currently producing over 40 unique exhibitions globally in museums, science centers, zoos, integrated resorts, and non-traditional venues, with millions of people around the world visiting our exhibitions each year. In addition to developing successful traveling exhibitions, Imagine Exhibitions designs, opens, and operates permanent installations and venues, and consults on building, expanding, and directing museums and attractions. With decades of diverse experience in the museum and entertainment industries, Imagine Exhibitions consistently develops exhibitions that educate and excite while exceeding attendance goals. For more information, visit www.ImagineExhibitions.com or find us on Facebook.

About Thomas Dambo

Thomas Dambo grew up building tree-houses and bird traps as a child and decided to go for a degree in design. His artistic career started in 2010 when he scattered colourful scrap wood birdhouses all over the urban landscape of Copenhagen as a form of street art. He since developed his practice as a recycle-artist working for festivals, television, and cities all over the world. The first Thomas Dambo troll ‘Jack Lumber’ saw the light of day in 2012 and since then the world has been populated with more than 75 trolls and counting.

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Imagine exhibitions

Imagine Exhibitions is currently producing over 40 unique exhibitions globally in museums, science centers, zoos, integrated resorts, and non-traditional venues, with millions of people around the world visiting our exhibitions each year.