An artist who creates 3D city maps by hand has unveiled his painstaking recreation of Dundee.
Carl Lavia, also known as Sketch, has revealed his completed drawing at The McManus, where it goes on display this weekend, after months of intricate work with ballpoint pens.
He created the drawing largely from memory after spending months mapping out the city’s streets and the finer details of its buildings.
He told the Tele in November that he hoped to see the completed sketch on show in a “public space” — a dream that has now been realised.
Speaking yesterday, he said it was an “honour and a privilege” to have the work on show at The McManus.
He continued: “It’s the sort of thing I’d dreamt about.
“There’s a lot of heritage here at The McManus.
“This a public work, for the people who live here — I’m doing this project for the citizens of the city.”
Dundee is the fourth city Carl has sketched out as part of the 69 Cities project he set up with photographer Lorna Le Bredonchel in 2016.
Despite being the smallest city drawn so far — after Birmingham, Manchester and Edinburgh — the Dundee sketch is Carl’s biggest yet.
He said: “It’s a painstaking effort, but it has the effect of a picture postcard. I’m a newcomer to Dundee but it’s a hidden gem of Scotland.
“The other day I was walking on the Tay Road Bridge and turned back and when you look at the V&A, the Discovery, the Law, Broughty Castle — it’s a picture postcard.
“I’ve spent so much time here I could probably do the taxi knowledge test.”
The finished image, measuring 2.9m x 1.118m, features six miles of Dundee, from Blackness to Broughty Castle and from the Law to Newport.
Detailed depictions of RRS Discovery, The McManus, the Tele’s home at DC Thomson in Meadowside and the new V&A make for incredible viewing up close.
The roads and rails, including the Tay bridges, are dotted with cars, buses and trains — and boats and rigs decorate the port and the river.
Of course, the sketch features the Tannadice and Dens Park stadiums, and Slessor Gardens even hosts a ferris wheel — a hint at its future use as a public events space.
Gareth Jackson, museum services section leader at The McManus, said Carl had built up an “intimate knowledge” of Dundee that showed in the finished work.
He added: “We think people are going to spend a lot of time trying to pick our their houses and landmarks.”
By the project’s end six years from now, Carl hopes to have mapped out every major city in the UK, and has already begun work on Stirling.
The artist, who has sketched since his school days, battled the condition Guillain-Barre syndrome — which can leave sufferers paralysed — to get to where he is today.
After beating the condition, he decided to take his casual sketching more seriously, leading to the creation of the 69 Cities project.
The Dundee drawing will be housed at The McManus for the next six months, from Saturday, with prints on sale in the gallery’s shop.
What happens to the drawing after that is up to Tony Banks, the chairman and founder of the Balhousie Care Group, as he has bought the drawing for an undisclosed sum. Mr Banks said: “The whole project captured my attention with its unique concept.”