THE BIG BOOK, 2010-2014

The Big Book sculpture stands 2.2m high and 1.60m wide and is bound in leather. It is believed to be the second largest book in the world.  It was first displayed at the Bodleian Library in Oxford and people were asked to contribute a small piece of writing on canvas pages inside with the title ‘Imagine’. The writing represents people from around the world and is written in 91 languages.  Everyone was asked to write in their mother tongue and nothing was edited.  Over 5,000 people have contributed and written on the pages of this inspiring work of art.

The Big Book toured 14 venues both within the UK and abroad including France, Germany, The Netherlands and Russia. It is an impressive symbol of learning, the power of shared ideas and the importance of human imagination.

Watch a short video:

Watch a full documentary video of all the venues:

08+Queuing+to+write+in+Cambridge a

Venues where the Big Book was exhibited:
Bodleian Library, Oxford. August 2010
Bonn Square September 2010
The British Library March 2010
University Library Cambridge May 2011
Bonn, Germany June 2011
Oxford Artweeks May 2012
Humboldt University Library, Berlin. July 2012
John Radcliffe Hospital November 2012
Grenoble, France. April 2013
Leiden, Netherlands. May 2013
Edinburgh Festival. August 2013
Perm, Russia. September 2013
Cheltenham Literary Festival. October 2013
The Story Museum, Oxford. May 2014.


Sponsors and supporters:
Matthew Potter, artist's assistant
John Winterbottom, structural engineer
Neal Spencer, construction
Mike Heaney, Bodleian Libraries
Oxford Inspires
Dan Selinger, Oxford University Press
Philip Pullman.
Michael and Gabriele Hertz
Pickfords Removals
Marie-Christine Simiand & the Grenoble/Oxford Association
Printemps du Livre de Grenoble
BplusC, Leiden
The Leiden/Oxford Association
Oxford International Links
Leiden University
Pat & Julian Goodacre
City Connect
Central Science Library
Cheltenham Literature Festival & Nelson Thornes
Tish Francis and staff at The Story Museum, Oxford
Mel Houldershaw & the Oxford Grenoble Association.
Jon Fawsett, The British Library
Cambridge University Press
Cambridge University Library
Rachel Capell and Oxford Twinning Association
Dr. Andreas Degkwitz and Frau Regina Pfeifenberger, Humboldt University Library
Scanning sponsored by John E Wright, Oxford

Thank you to all friends and individual sponsors of the project.