Wednesday, November 30, 2011

The mysterious paper sculptures of the libraries of Scotland

I love Twitter. I admit it. I'm kind of addicted to it. Very few people that I actually know are on Twitter so I follow a lot of people that I don't actually know but can sometimes interact with through Twitter. These people are mostly writers, bloggers, comedians, and podcasters. What's really neat about Twitter is sometimes you get to watch a story unfold that you wouldn't normally hear anything about because it happens half a world away. For example, the story of some mysterious paper sculptures that appeared in various libraries and museums throughout Edinburgh, Scottland. The story began in the spring when the first sculpture was discovered in the Scottish Poetry Library and periodically, new pieces were left as gifts in other libraries, museums, and at the Edinburgh Book Festival. Each piece was accompanied by a gift tag which was addressed to the Twitter handle of the organization where the gift had been left. The phrase "In support of libraries, books, words, ideas..." was also included on the gift tags. The artist has remained anonymous. I first read about it when Neil Gaiman tweeted about it from the Edinburgh Book Festival as the mystery was beginning to capture everyone's imagination. As more pieces were discovered, other people would pass along the tweets and eventually NPR picked up the story. It was very exciting to find out over Twitter when a new piece had been discovered, to click on a link and to read how the piece was found and see pictures of it. Well, the story has at last come to an end with the final piece (10 of 10) being discovered where it all began, at the Scottish Poetry Library. Accompanying the final piece was a letter of explanation in which the artist mentions "the twitter community who in some strange way gave rise to the idea in the first place." I strongly urge you to go here to read the complete story with pictures and updates that tracks the mystery as it unfolded. It's fascinating and magical and joyful and I'm sure it will brighten your day.

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