11 August 2010

Cumbernauld Sculpture - A Behind The Scenes Glimpse of the Creation of An Ethereal Beauty

It has taken almost a year to complete but later this summer the Scottish town of Cumbernauld will be transformed by the presence of as yet unnamed steel maiden – standing over ten meters in height.  The immense sculpture is the work of internationally renowned artist Andy Scott.  We at Kuriositas are very pleased to show you some behind the scenes pictures of the statue's creation, courtesy of the Campsies Centre Cumbernauld Ltd project team.

These first pictures of the sculpture show the head of the maiden, constructed from steel plates and large enough itself – 1.5 meters high and wide.  The hair is deliberately styled to reflect the 1960s – when Cumbernauld was created as a new town (a planned community on previously unsettled land).

The town is probably most famous (internationally at least) for the charming 1981 coming of age film Gregory’s Girl.  However, it is hoped that with the sculpture, the town will become a beacon for visitors and investors in business in the twenty first century. At a quarter of a million pounds, it does represent something of a gamble.

The sculpture will, when completed, incorporate two large arcs, swooping from her hands to the base.  In Scottish Gaelic, the name Cumbernauld comes from comar nan allt which translates as the coming together of waters.  As such it is a more than appropriate image for the town.

We must wait for the unveiling of the sculpture to see the finished piece of work in its entirety, above is an artist's impression of what it will look like. The height of ten meters is shown here by the tiny image of a person at the bottom left of the sculpture.

Although the statue echoes the past its purpose is very much to project a positive image of the town for the future.  When in place it is hoped that the sculpture will be seen by over seventy thousand people a day.  The modernity of the statue is such that she even has her own Facebook page. Click on the link here - or any of the pictures - to visit the FB page.

Cumbernauld has, as a town, had its detractors in the past – but such is the local support for the sculpture that one company, Highland Galvnizers, has offered the expensive galvanisation process free of charge.  This will give the steel structure an even more ethereal look than she already possesses.

These most recent pictures were taken at the beginning of August.  Galvanizing the sculptuire is the last off-site stage of the artwork and, in the near future, she will take her rightful place overlooking the A80 motorway at the entrance to the town.  From dark, industrial steel to an elegant and almost eerie form, this sculpture will turn many a head.

Andy Scott has a long history of art in Scotland and his portfolio extends to over seventy works both there and abroad.  Some have become incredibly popular local signposts, such as his Heavy Horse sculpture on the M8 motorway just outside Scotland’s second city, Glasgow (see below).

It can only be hoped that the Cumbernauld sculpture (as yet unnamed) will become the emblem for the regeneration of the town and increase the pride the local residents already have in their town.

Kuriositas would like to thank the Campsies Centre Cumbernauld Ltd project team and Bill Ranatunga  for permission to use the pictures of the Cumbernauld Sculpture in this article.