Sarah Bodman asked me to propose a book for World Book Night.
I chose Tim Dinsdale's 'The Loch Ness Monster', published in 1961.
World Book Night is a national celebration of reading and books which takes place on 23 April every year. Books are given out across the UK with a focus on reaching those who don’t regularly read, and are gifted through organisations including prisons, libraries, colleges, hospitals, care homes and homeless shelters, as well as by passionate individuals who give out their own books within their communities.
World Book Night is run by The Reading Agency, a national charity that inspires people to become confident and enthusiastic readers.
Previous books included, Margaret Atwood Handmaid's Tale, and Stephen King's 'The Shinning'
international Artists,Illustrators and Printmakers are invited to read the selected book and respond with a piece of artwork, in the Shinning's case it was a prop for an animation short, for the Handmaiden Tale, an edition of rubber stamped cards ( one of which is in the Tate Museum's collection)
Here's a link to a short film showing the edition being complied https://vimeo.com/164111118
Why this book I hear you say? Well let me introduce Tim Dinsdale.
Here he is pointing to a model of the Loch Ness monster.
After seeing the Surgeons photograph of the monster. He decided to take a long trip to Loch Ness, after several fruitless visits to the Loch side, and just as he was about to leave he finally got a glimpse of Nessie. He had a camera at his side and took this famous film of an unknown creature swimming across the Loch, creating a large wake for all to see. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GdQUbLKwCvQ
His story is described in exciting detail in the book. He went on to write 3 more books on the subject.
About a dozen of us visited the Loch. And kept a beady eye out for any unusual splashes and wakes.
Alas we didn't have any luck, however we did have an encounter with Adrain Shines, Shine is the leader of the Loch Ness & Morar Project and has been engaged in fieldwork in the Highlands since 1973 when he constructed the manned underwater observation chamber "Machan". He subsequently led over 1000 students and lay volunteers on expeditions, training them to observe, sample and record data. In more recent collaborations, projects have involved workers from some 20 universities and academic institutions within the UK and overseas.
He signed a copy of his book.
Later that same day we all made art pieces, contributed to a rubber stamp Loch Ness map, and started to plan a publication and short film of our trip.
Here's the abstract, written by Sarah Bodman.
“Although there have been quite a few books written on the subject, really we know very little.” NESSIE, Seven Years in Search of the Monster, Frank Searle Monster-Hunter Extraordinary, Coronet Books, 1976. For 2017, our tribute is to all the weird and wonderful, scientific and practical, believing and sceptical endeavours recorded in publications about the Loch Ness Monster – hence the apt title of BOOK ISH NESS created by Linda Parr. A collaboration with 46 national and international artists for World Book Night 2017. BOOKISHNESS, 2017, edition of 100. One copy for each contributor to the event. In the collection of Tate Britain, UK; Winchester School of Art Library, UK.
And the film! ( this features, photographs taken during the trip, drawings, prints, and spreads from the book)