The Why?s Man
"My art is place specific and people specific." George Wyllie
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ODE TO A SAFETY-PIN
In 1849 in New York City
Walter Hunt was a figure of pity
destitute - without a cent
couldn't buy food or pay the rent
stomach empty, body thin,
he made the very first Safety-Pin
for poverty was the great incentive
which encouraged him to be inventive.
Walter's finances were extremely tight
and he had to sell the copyright
for a hundred dollars - a meager sum
to save him from becoming a bum
but the buyer made a fortune quicker
for that is the way of the city slicker
to be financially manipulative
and exploit the brains of the innovative.
George Wyllie created his safety-pin scul?ture, just in case. In fact, it was originally entitled, Just in Case. It first appeared at Glasgow's Mayfest and was created to raise questions about the funding of that festival. Mayfest is no more and the safety-pin scul?ture has become a monument to maternity, relocated to Rottenrow, once the site of Glasgow's maternity hospital.
George Wyllie also wrote a play around the theme of 'just in case', with the giant safety-pin present on stage. Like many of his dramatic productions, Voyages Round a Safety-pin was a dialogue, as always with music, between the experienced Wyllie and the youthful, David Michael Clarke.
Voyages Round a Satfey-Pin
Monument to Maternity
George Wyllie Education Initiative
Managed by Media Matters Education Consultancy