This interactive sculpture outside The Bill Douglas Cinema Museum provides fun for all the family.
Artist Kenny Munro created this sculpture from mirrored stainless steel, allowing the visitor to engage with reflections from the natural world (and of themselves and their friends!). The mirrored surfaces work both inside and outside the structure and are crowned by a model of a magic lantern.
Reflected Vision is informed by the pre-cinema holdings of the Bill Douglas Cinema Museum and the different ways of seeing created by optical entertainments.
Bill Douglas was both a filmmaker and a collector and the museum was founded from the huge collection of moving image ephemera he put together with his friend Peter Jewell. Bill was fascinated by the wonder of different ways of viewing the world and the sculpture also contains a stone, bearing a poetry inscription from the Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyám that was used as the epigraph to the published script of Bill’s film Comrades.
Kenny Munro is an environmental artist who trained at Edinburgh College of Art and Royal College of Art and has designed many public works of art in Scotland. He is also a great admirer of Bill Douglas’s films and created a sculpture called ‘A Place of Dreams’ in Bill’s home area of Newcraighall, Edinburgh.
The mirrored stainless steel used was fabricated by McMillan Ltd of Prestonpans, East Lothian, under Kenny’s direction. Bill Douglas is buried at Bishop’s Tawton, North Devon, and the links between Scotland and Devon are underlined also by the use of Scottish granite, supplied by Fyfe Glenrock of Oldmeldrum, Aberdeenshire, for the poetry slab, and the use of natural Dartmoor granite rocks in the landscaping.
The sculpture has been largely funded through private donations and through the Exeter University Foundation, as well as the generosity of suppliers. Thanks also the the work of the University’s Building and Estates and Grounds teams. It has a great position on the grass bank above Prince of Wales Road, looking over the City. We hope that ‘Reflected Vision’ will be both an attraction for visitors to the museum, which offers two galleries of artefacts on the history of the moving image and a collection of over 75,000 items (www.bdcmuseum.org.uk).
Photograph: © University of Exeter