A three dimensional portrayal of Wigtown’s buildings, landscape and people is being created for the town’s international book festival.
The colourful project, called Wee Wigtown, is being carried out by Anupa Gardner, who has been awarded the Spring Fling x Wigtown Book Festival Residency 2014/15.
The “town-within-a-town” will consist of 11 large panels, up to 2.5m wide, which festivalgoers can walk between to gradually discover more about the area.
Anupa said: “It shows the buildings and streets, the cherry trees, the blue hills, the harbour and all the other things which make Wigtown so special. It has been created using recycled materials donated by residents, and it even incorporates plants and earth from the town.
“It has a very playful element and I hope people will have fun walking between the panels and discovering all sorts of different places and features.
“We will also be playing recordings of local people talking about what makes Wigtown so special to them – the things and places they value like the County Buildings and the Martyr’s Stake.”
|The Stirling Wolf, part of Anupa's Stirling art trail. More detail available on her blog here|
Visitors will be able to add to the work by writing down what Wigtown means to them and having their words incorporated into the panels.
Based in Edinburgh but originally from India, Anupa describes her work as a response to her surroundings which comes from her interest in people’s stories and their relationships with places.
The huge portrait will be displayed in the town’s Bowling Pavilion during the festival and Anupa will be on hand to talk to visitors.
Adrian Turpin, Director of Wigtown Book Festival, said: “We loved the idea behind Anupa’s proposal to create a portrayal of Wigtown using contributions from local people and festival goers.
“Wigtown Book Festival is very much rooted within the community and Anupa’s model will reflect this. We’re also delighted to be working so closely with Spring Fling again for the sixth time.”
Previous residents have included Astrid Jaekel, papercut artist; Deirdre Nelson, textile artist; and Joanne Kaar, grass weaver and artist.
The residency has gathered momentum as the book festival and Spring Fling, which is Scotland’s premier contemporary visual art and craft open studios event, continue to grow. This year the residency attracted 55 applicants from across the world.
Leah Black, Director of Spring Fling said: “Anupa’s work is a real delight and this project is very different from anything we’ve seen in Wigtown before.
“As well as taking part in the book festival she will also have studio space at next year’s Spring Fling so will have a chance to engage with even more visitors.”
Several other Spring Fling artists are taking part in this year’s book festival:
- Photographers Morag Paterson and Ted Leeming will talk about their project and book Zero Footprint. This involved taking photos from precisely the same spot in their hillside studio over the space of four years.
- Printmaker Lisa Hooper will talk about her journey from career conservationist to celebrated bird artist, using images and vignettes from her new book, First Impressions.
- Helen Ryman will encourage others help her in her mission to paint the festival’s largest oil painting.
- Children aged 7–11 year are invited to turn their stories and illustrations into magical trinkets in a workshop with jeweller Joanne Garner.
- Ailsa Black will run an illustration and card-making workshop.
Last year’s artist in residence, Astrid Jaekel, is also coming back to Wigtown Book Festival 2014. Her Wigtown Peep Boards project will match each bookshop in Scotland’s National Book Town with an international book town.