WEARY JOW and other art…

April 1, 2009

THIS HOUSE... THIS POEM... THIS FRESH HYPOTHESIS

THIS HOUSE... THIS POEM... THIS FRESH HYPOTHESIS

…JOUKERY PAWKERY – MUCKLE JORUM: just a few of the choice phrases chosen by Elizabeth Ogilvie for her balustrade textwork – the glass wall on the mezzanine level of the SPL. We’re all ‘art, us, much of it commissioned especially for the new building. Our balustrade (pictured above) is part of Elizabeth’s ‘Text Interventions’. The glass is transfigured due to the constantly changing natural light. Today, for instance, is sunny, but clouds keep skiffling across. When the light pierces in, it can do this:

Tricks of the light...

Tricks of the light...

In ‘Aspects and First Views of the New Library’ in 1999, Elizabeth explained that this work was created by way of homage to Scottish poetry over the centuries. Elizabeth spent much time on research, and on  selecting of the choicest phrases ‘in an attempt to extract an essence of Scotland, its land and its people’.

She also spoke to Iain Crichton Smith shortly before his death to ask his permission to use an extract from one of his early sonnets, a catalyst for both reader and poet visiting the library…

And so it was that THIS HOUSE… THIS POEM… THIS FRESH HYPOTHESIS became one of the SPL’s central expressions, a sign of the optimism inspired by the written word. Message aside, on a sunny day at lunchtime, it certainly puts a lucky spin on a cheese sandwich.

2 Responses to “WEARY JOW and other art…”


  1. […] 16, 2009 We spoke before about our textwork balustrade, an Elizabeth Ogilvie commission for our new building back in 1999. Well, now the haar has finally […]


  2. […] and did guided tours of the library, including our art work (such as our commissioned stripes and mezzanine glasswork). Afterwards, we read some poems, of […]


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