Ex Terra Vis

by Ian Sloan Photography

Ex Terra Vis

Ex Terra Vis

This large sculpture is by Benno Schotz (born 28 August 1891 Arensburg - died 11 October 1984 Glasgow), an Estonian-born Scottish artist. In 1912, he emigrated to Glasgow, where he gained an engineering diploma from the Royal Technical College.

From 1914-1923 he worked in the drawing office of Messrs John Brown, a Clydebank shipbuilders, while attending evening classes in sculpture at the Glasgow School of Art. Schotz became a full time sculptor in 1923. From this point onwards his reputation grew and he became a full member of the Royal Scottish Academy, head of sculpture at the Glasgow School of Art (a post he held from 1938 until his retirement in 1961), and eventually was appointed the Sculptor in Ordinary for Scotland in 1963.

Ex Terra Vis is latin for "From The Earth Comes Life" and this refers to the fact that Glenrothes New Town was created to provide homes for coal miners at the nearby doomed Rothes Colliery. The figures of a mother and children dominate an entrance to the Kingdom Centre.

The Kingdom of Fife is famous for Golf, for its history, castles and palaces, the Forth Rail Bridge, Fishing Villages of the East Neuk and perhaps even fish and chips at Anstruther.

But these modern sculptures remind us that Fife is also a very 21st century place, and although we enjoy our history, our part of the world is also very modern.

Comments for Ex Terra Vis

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Jul 15, 2012
Growing up....
by: Lee Valentine

I lived in Falkland from the age of six (1972) to 17 (1982) and most of my Mum's shopping was done in an early, smaller version of The Kingdom Centre. Whilst knowing nothing about Art/Sculpture I can honestly say this piece touched me! I'm not sure of it's intention but I see it as iconic, intuitive and optimistic. I now live far away but fondly remember "Ex Terra Vis" which takes me back to bus journeys, shopping, cinema & working in Dixons!!! Thank you for posting this information & picture.

Nov 12, 2007
stretch upwards
by: West Coast Girl

Hey you're really talking to me now. A guy from John Brown's in Clydebank (on the west coast of Scotland) and then he goes to Glasgow School of Art (where my own daughter went for 3 years) and then he sculpts this amazingly symbolic sculpture for Glenrothes. Isn't it great when you find out a bit of history and thinking that goes behind the art, it makes it more real and I'm sure this must put a spring in people's step in Glenrothes when they see this hopeful reaching upwards. Can't wait to visit.

Nov 06, 2007
Well I never knew that
by: Captian Pugwash

Life as it is, there are many things I don't know - this was one of them.

I see this strange sculpture reaching out to the gray sky near to the bus station and Kingdom Centre - but never really knew what it was. Now I know.

They always say that you should learn at least one new fact every day - thanks Ian for today's.

Glenrothes is a place full of pleasant surprises, with its endless,but individually colourful roundabouts and its modern tasteful sculptures and beautiful relaxing parks.

Nov 06, 2007
by: May

I've passed this sculpture so many times, but never really understood what it was all about, or the history or the guy who designed it.

Thanks for sharing that with us Ian.

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