One of my customers will publish his latest book next month and is having a launch evening at Stills Gallery in Edinburgh.
Highland Journey - In the Spirit of Edwin Muir
A book launch, organised jointly between Beyond Words and Stills Gallery, will be held at Stills (23 Cockburn Street) Edinburgh on Thursday 28 May from 6.30 pm
Over a period of 90 days, Robin Gillanders journeyed throughout the Highlands of Scotland and Orkney in the spirit of Edwin Muir’s Scottish Journey of 1934, photographing whoever and whatever he encountered.
The journey was made in a campervan with the shower converted into a darkroom, so that film processing could take place ‘on the road’. In the manner of itinerant photographers of the 19th and 20th centuries, he used a traditional large format camera and black and white film; the photographs, each with accompanying text, describe the journey and relate to specific issues facing the highlands today and draw comparison with Edwin Muir’s highlands of 75 years ago.
Edwin Muir became particularly interested in the nature of Scottish ‘identity’ during his journey and his descriptions have become an important historical resource for the economic, political and social condition of Scotland between the world wars. As with Muir in 1934, it was not Gillanders’ intention to present an image of the ‘tourist’ Highlands, but rather to present an honest, and subjective account of what he encountered.
This is a fascinating and beautifully illustrated account of contemporary life in the Scottish Highlands and is set to become as important a record as Edwin Muir’s venerated work.
Robin Gillanders was brought up in Edinburgh and educated at the Royal High School and Edinburgh University, where he read History. He went on to become a history teacher at the Royal High, Edinburgh until 1983 before taking up his current position as Reader in Photography at Napier University, where he has taught for 25 years.