These two drawings (A Walk Around Portree and Every Road on the Isle of Skye) represent the Isle of Skye and the Portree area as I experienced them on a series of solo expeditions during May, June and October of 2012. Each of these drawings is a memory map in the borrowed form of a road map, plotting out the subjective shape of a travelled-through and remembered landscape. The method is heuristic-touristic – I undertake the journey in order to be able to recall it, and although this results in more or less accurate, navigable maps, the objective along the way is always the mapping out of the lived experience and the impression left, rather than of the terrain itself.
For the Portree drawing I walked every road, path and pavement, making note of every incident, interaction and point of interest or association along the way, until I had built up a detailed psychogeographical image of the area in my own memory. After some time the work was then drawn, by eye, from existing maps, from memory and from notebooks and sketches. The Skye drawing was begun by scaling this method up to road-trip size – it documents everything which could be found on the island’s public roads, as seen from the driver’s seat of a mid-size touring car. The drawings each required approximately two weeks of intensive travel time.
This project was commissioned by ATLAS Arts in collaboration with the Portree Community Trust, with special thanks to Emma Nicolson and Ross Cowie.
jmm, Jan ’13
Prints of this work are available now from the ATLAS Arts shop.
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