Art Talk: Kelpies

If one (my siblings and I) is going to be looking for ancestors in Falkirk, Scotland see recent post Searching for ancestors in Scotland then one (my siblings and I) must go and see and take pictures of the Kelpies!

The Kelpies were built in 2013 and stand 30 meters or 98 feet high. 1 You can gauge how big they are in the picture below with the people to help put them in scale.

The Kelpies are built of structural steel with a stainless steel cladding and and weigh 300 tons each. 1 They are really massive.

What is a Kelpie you ask? So did I.

Kelpie, or water kelpie, is a shape-shifting water spirit inhabiting the lochs and pools of Scotland. It has usually been described as appearing as a horse, but is able to adopt human form.2

The Kelpies are next to a new extension to the Forth and Clyde Canal, and near River Carron. And the name was chosen by the Scottish Canals, which is the public corporation of the Scottish Government responsible for managing the country's inland waterways. 3

The Kelpies name reflected the mythological transforming beasts possessing the strength and endurance of 10 horses; a quality that is analogous with the transformational change and endurance of Scotland's inland waterways. 1

The artist is Andy Scott, a Scottish figurative sculptor, working in galvanised steel and cast bronze out of his studio in Philadelphia. 4

We walked around for quite awhile getting all different angles.

At night the red lights inside are quite pronounced. We also got a really cool sky.

Here is a 1:30 minute video of Andy Scott speaking in his wonderful Scottish accent about the Kelpies.


1The Kelpies
2 Kelpies
3Scottish Canals
4Andy Scott

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