The Kirkwood
Wild in Art

A Wild in Art event brought to you by The Kirkwood.

Get to know our artists: Donna Newman

Our community is the beating heart of The Kirkwood. Through the launch of this fun, interactive art trail, we hope to reignite community spirit by bringing friends and families from across the borough together again after a challenging few years.

With this is mind, we had one important task in mind for artist, Donna Newman, who designed our first Snowdog to raise awareness of the upcoming trail and give the public a glimpse of what’s to come. The trail’s official figurehead, the sculpture has been busy touring our towns and villages ahead of the launch later this year. Some of you may have already spotted it at a local school, supermarket or John Smith’s Stadium (to name a few of the spots we’ve visited!).

The Snowdog, which still remains unnamed, personifies the sense of pride, togetherness and diversity offered by the event and is the ultimate representation of what makes the trial so special here in Kirklees. Featuring an illustrated map of the borough, a selection of iconic local landmarks, together with visual representations of friends and families, the design made such an impact that it was quickly snapped up by sculpture sponsor, Stafflex, at the art selection event back in March.

We spoke to Donna to find out a bit more about her work as an artist which led her to creating a design for Snowdogs Support Life, Kirklees:

Q: Can you take us through your journey as an artist? 

A: After studying Fine Art at Coventry University, I spent the last 16 years working as a freelance mural artist. I predominantly work with schools, creating large scale murals, artwork and signage, and often support school groups in creating bespoke artwork through collaborative children’s art workshops. Over the last five years I have become more involved with public art commissions. I would describe myself as a sculpture trail painting addict and have worked closely with Wild in Art on over 60 sculpture commissions helping to raise over £200,000 for charities through their sales. It was particularly exciting being asked to create the pre-launch sculpture ahead of the trail.

Q: Where has your passion for art trails from?

A: I love getting involved with public art trails. They generate such a buzz within their communities and it’s a really fantastic way to bring art to the streets whilst helping to raise awareness for the charities involved. The auctions are always incredibly exciting and it’s very rewarding to see your work raising funds for a really worthwhile cause.

Snowdogs Support Life, Kirklees officially launches to the public on September 2nd and will run for eight weeks. The art trail is set to be the largest free event of its kind to ever come to West Yorkshire.

To discover some of Donna’s past projects, visit

To find out more about The Kirkwood’s mission to support people across Kirklees living with a life limiting illness, please visit

Snowdogs Support Life 2022