Paper sculptures brought together

Mystery sculptures displayed together for first time at National Library

Five intricate paper sculptures that appeared mysteriously across Scotland last year are to be displayed for the first time together at the National Library of Scotland (NLS).

From Monday (November 25), the public will get the chance to see all five sculptures that were inspired by classic Scottish stories and left in secret locations in celebration of last year's Book Week Scotland.

The beautiful paper sculptures were made by a mystery artist whose identity remains a secret. The same sculptor left a series of paper sculptures around Edinburgh in 2011 — all of which celebrated the importance of libraries, words and ideas.

NLS received one of these based on Ian Rankin's book 'Exit music' which is now on permanent display in its foyer. It will be joined by the five others, starting on the opening day of this year's Book Week Scotland. They will then be on display for a year.

'The story of these mysterious sculptures has received worldwide media attention and fascinated people across different continents,' said National Librarian Martyn Wade. 'We are delighted to be able to display the five Book Week Scotland sculptures along with the one that was given to the Library. They are works of art in themselves and well worth seeing.'

The Scottish Book Trust which organises Book Week Scotland is loaning the sculptures to the Library until next November. Its Chief Executive, Marc Lambert, said: 'During last year's Book Week Scotland we generated a lot of excitement around the sculptures by creating a national treasure hunt, with people racing across the country to be the first to discover the sculpture of the day.

'NLS has had the great idea of bringing all the different sculptures together in one exhibition, and now everyone can see the beautiful works of art that we hope encouraged more people to read. There are similarly exciting things happening during Book Week Scotland 2013, including the unveiling of major new art installations around the country, so check our website and get involved.'

The five sculptures are based on famous Scottish books and were found in locations around Scotland:

  • The first was inspired by and made out of Alasdair Gray's novel 'Lanark'. It was found in the Glasgow School of Art Library
  • The next sculpture, based on the Robert Burns poem 'Tam o' Shanter', was found in the Burns Birthplace Museum in Alloway
  • Compton Mackenzie's 'Whisky galore' was the source for the third, found in the Am Politician pub on the Isle of Eriskay
  • J M Barrie's 'Peter Pan' came next, found at the writer's birthplace in Kirriemuir
  • The last of the five was inspired by Robert Louis Stevenson's 'Treasure Island' which turned up at the Scottish Seabird Centre in North Berwick.

They will be displayed during Book Week Scotland with rare editions of the books which inspired the sculptures, taken from the Library's collections.

This is the second year of Book Week Scotland. The initiative is about celebrating books and reading in every part of life in Scotland.

NLS has organised a varied programme of events to celebrate the week.


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22 November 2013

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