Skip to main content Skip to navigation

A snapshot of 1997

In this year at Warwick:

  • Salman Rushdie visited the Arts Centre. Listen to his interview in full.
  • The Arts Centre received funding from the National Lottery to carry out substantial refurbishment.
  • Professor Zeeman opened the new £3.5m Mathematics Institute Building.
  • The Biological Sciences and Medical Research Institute buildings opened.
  • Tony Blair (leader of the opposition at the time) and his wife Cherie visited campus.
  • Performance and site-specific art organized by Richard Layzell, Resident Artist at the Mead Gallery for one month, takes over campus. The aim was to place ordinary things in unusual places, so people were confronted by such things as the University's Ballroom Dancing Society performing in the Science concourse, teddy bears being catapulted across Red Square and a sound system playing birdsong and wildlife sounds outside the Students' Union.

  • Twelve Mallard ducklings took up residence in the Humanities Japanese Garden. Food pellets were provided to make sure they had enough to eat.
  • The following people received honorary degrees from Warwick: Professor Marilyn Butler, Ms. Jung Chang, Mr. Malcolm Clarkson, Mr. Massimo Coen CBE, Sir David Davies CBE, Mr. Collin Ferguson, Sir Alistair Grant, Prof. David Lodge, Prof. Sir Robert May, M. Willy Ronis, Prof. Martin Trow and Mr. Willian Yardley.

Since the1990's Wuthrich's art has revolved around books which he has used as raw materials for creating installations within galleries. He buys large quantities of clothbound books from antiquarian books sellers, selecting them not for their content, but for their physical, aesthetic qualities. He uses them intact, yet alienated from normal usage, producing displays where the coloured cloth bindings find new precedence over the contents of the book, often creating playful colour combinations. The books are installed in such a way that they can easily be returned to their true purpose and the contents can be discovered once again. They are piled or stacked or individually fastened to the gallery walls.

And in the world:

  • Diana, Princess of Wales and Dodi Al-Fayed were killed in a car accident.
  • Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone was published.
  • Mother Teresa died.
  • Tiger Woods at 21 years old became the youngest ever golfer to win the Masters.

  • The films Titanic, Men in Black, Air Force One, The Full Monty and Tomorrow Never Dies were all released in this year.


The Gibbet Hill extension. Picture taken in 1997.


Ninety Nine Books | Peter Wuthrich