A Sense of Place – Reviewing the Walk

One of the main things I try to do with “My Walk this Week” is to give a sense of the place I have been walking. Usually the inclusion of soundscapes helps to provide this (I hope), but I do not always do any field recoding. The advice given to me prior to our day out in Edinburgh was to simply try and get a sense of the place. This we did so far as we were able within the time available and it was much enjoyed.

The Helix, which we visited on the way home to see the Kelpies, was also worth the extra mileage. I think that this final image of their huge heads appearing as if from the ground begins to give a sense of a place where you are forced to reassess your surroundings due to the unfamiliar scale of a familiar creature.

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No Excuses – Photography and Memory

I have posted a total of 14 images of The Kelpies as part of my walk this week and that may well be too many for most of you. However, I have reviewed them sequentially on a number of occasions in posting to this blog and found that they serve me with a good memory. There are aspects of our visit to The Helix, specifically to see these sculptural installations in the Scottish landscape, that I am pleased to have enhanced by the images. The fall of changing light as the sun began to set, the details of pattern and reflection in the structures and a hint at the true scale of the work in relation to myself and the surrounding landscape.

So for those who read these posts as well as those who only look at the images, I make no excuses for the number of photos of these magnificent horses and recommend that if you get the chance, they are worth a visit.

The Kelpies

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Horses in the Landscape – The Kelpies

Returning from my walk this week as a day trip to Edinburgh, we took a slightly round about route and visited The Helix at Falkirk to see The Kelpies. I had known about this wonderful installation but wanted to see it for myself. I have done my best with the photos below but like all the other images available online, they cannot do justice to the real thing.

The Kelpies

The Kelpies, The Helix Park, Falkirk

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Art in Edinburgh – Modern One

At the entrance to the Scottish Gallery of Modern Art – Modern 1, we were met by this figure emerging from the pavement! This work is by Anthony Gormley and although one of the main exhibitions in gallery at the time was by Bridget Riley, as with Modern 2, there were other interesting things to be seen as well, including the building and its grounds.

Both Modern 1 and Modern 2 have mural projects in their stairwells – in Modern 1 it is a Douglas Gordan piece which lists all the people he could remember ever having met. The list stretches from the ground floor to the roof and looking over the banister gave me quite a woozy feeling.

We were lucky with the weather on our visit to Edinburgh and the light played a part in the art of this building just as it did in Modern 2.

sculpture by Anthony Gormley

Anthony Gormley sculpture

My Walk this Week – Scottish Interlude

My walk this week takes place in Scotland. While on holiday there in the south west, we took a day trip to Edinburgh and returned via The Helix Park at Falkirk to see The Kelpies for ourselves, but more on them later in the week.

It is about 35 years since I was last in Edinburgh despite having been born there. It was a 2.5 hour drive to get there and we didn’t want to spoil things by trying to do too much. So we decided on two venues close together and a short walk in the city centre. The venues were both the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art – Modern One and Modern Two.

Modern 2 – the main exhibition was of drawing by Joseph Beuys, a very interesting show but it was essential to read all the accompanying notes in order to have any understanding of the work itself and how it related to his performance art. The museum itself is what my photos below focus on and it, too, was a fascinating place though with low light levels and a warm day, it felt rather stuffy and claustrophobic.

Modern 1 stairwell

Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art 2 – Stairwell Project by Richard Wright

Wigtown Bay and Reviewing the Walk

Back down at sea level again in Wigtown Bay after my walk this week to Cairnholy chambered tombs, the weather has not improved. But you don’t visit Scotland for the sunshine and if anything the damp weather just added to the experience in the Galloway hills.

I am afraid there is no soundscape this week – back to normal next week.

Wigtown Bay

Wigtown Bay Weather

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From Inside and Outside

With a final look across the landscape from inside Cairnholy chambered tomb and a last look back at its standing stones, we descended back down the lane through woodland to the car.  If you are ever in Galloway, StillWalks Scotland and enjoy the neolithic era of burial architecture, this is a site worth visiting. Don’t let bad weather put you off, it’s worth it in the rain as well as the sunshine.

Cairnholy chambered tomb

Looking out

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Cairnholy 2

Continuing up the hill on my walk this week we found the second Cairnholy chambered tomb site. There are not so many standing stones arranged around this burial chamber but the profile of it against the cloudy sky made for a strong composition.

Cairnholy 2

Cairnholy 2

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