Thursday, July 03, 2014

Books About Town: Criminally Good Benches


This beautiful bench, representing Hercule Poirot and the Greenshore Folly is one of 50 that have sprung up around London as part of Books About Town. Other crime-related benches are 'James Bond Stories' and 'Sherlock Holmes Stories'. All three are on the Bloomsbury Trail.

From the press release:
From today, benches shaped like open books will pop up all over the capital for Londoners, families and visitors to find and enjoy. ‘Books about Town’, launched by the National Literacy Trust and Wild in Art brings 50 unique BookBench sculptures to the city, created by local artists and famous names, to celebrate London’s literary heritage and reading for enjoyment.

The BookBenches feature stories linked to London and are based on a range of iconic books from treasured children’s stories such as The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe and Peter Pan to classic adult titles including 1984 and The Day of the Triffids.

Axel Scheffler has illustrated a bench which celebrates his work with Julia Donaldson and the characters they have created together, including The Gruffalo and characters from their new book The Scarecrow’s Wedding. Among the other top artists involved is Ralph Steadman who illustrated Lewis Caroll’s children’s classic Through the Looking Glass in 1973 and has reproduced some of these illustrations on a unique BookBench. Children’s authors Lauren Child and Cressida Cowell have each designed benches based on their own series Clarice Bean and How To Train Your Dragon. Original illustration by Rae Smith, the Tony and Olivier award-winning stage designer of the National Theatre’s production of War Horse also features on a bespoke War Horse BookBench.

Well-loved literary heroes such as Sherlock Holmes, James Bond, Mary Poppins and Hercules Poirot also appear on benches which visitors can discover by following literary trails in Greenwich, City of London, Riverside and Bloomsbury until mid-September. On 7 October, the BookBenches will be auctioned at the Southbank Centre to raise valuable funds for the National Literacy Trust to tackle illiteracy in deprived communities across the UK.

3 comments:

Margot Kinberg said...

What a lovely idea! And some talented artists, too!

Harvee Lau said...

Thanks for letting us know about this. I've posted a few of them on my blog too! Aren't they maravelous!
Harvee
Book Dilettante

Rebecca Bradley said...

I really really love the look of these benches and wish I could see them up close, but I look forward to seeing them pop up on Twitter and other places.