Book Sculptures, 2008

Outside the Cranbrook Public Library, large books are scattered across the lawn as if momentarily left behind by a thoughtful giant. These forged iron sculptures/benches are the work of local architectural blacksmith Paul Reimer (and his team) and Fernie artist Michael Hepher. 

When chief librarian Ursula Brigl indicated an interest in adding public art to the library's presence, Reimer approached her and they brainstormed ideas. The library raised funds for two sculptures and Reimer donated a third. The books have been a hit, drawing people to the library. They're remarkably lifelike for 400 kg blocks of steel, partially due to the convincing paint job on the book jackets. "We had to invent our own paint process for the covers," says Reimer. "We really wanted it to look like leather. It's a mix of brown marine enamel and black penetrating stain."