NEON were engaged by Culture Mile to develop a proposal that responded to the unique heritage of West Smithfield. Our proposal responded to the bizarre legacy of Toby the Real Learned Pig who first appeared at Bartholomew Fair in 1917. Toby was a pig that had extra-ordinary powers; he could read, cast accounts, tell the point of the sun’s rising and setting, tell the time and perform blindfolded. As an attraction, Toby became so popular that their was even counterfeit versions at the fair!
Our proposal responds to this story and presents it in a way that would allow the public to engage with it. The project uses inflatables to create a snout inspired form which is suspended above the plaza using a scaffold frame. The public may pop up into one of the snouts and talk to Toby who has the ability to answer any question they ask.