Monday, November 17, 2014

A book about Taigh and Wilding Garden

Norman Haddow kindly sent me a small book about a dry stone project he was involved in last year. 

'Taigh and Wilding Garden' at the Royal Botanic Garden in Edinburgh is the inspiration of artist and poet Alec Finlay who collaborated with Norman and others to create a structure that commemorates, in a very sensitive and artistic way, the people of Scotland who have donated organs.  This special 'book of rememberance' about the project is now given to the families of donors.
Alec Finlay explains the basis of his research into ' how do people memorialize '  

" Ranging through cultures and traditions, I have been drawn, in particular, to the arts of memory as they were practiced by the Ancient Greeks, and described by the great French scholars, Vernant, Detienne, and Vidal Nacquet. By comparison, the ancient traditions of the peoples of Scotland remain obscure, but, if the rites of the past can only be glimpsed, there are still places – sites of alignment and particular atmospheres – and remains – ruined places, structures, and sacred plantings – from which we can imagine. The most important of these structures and, not surprisingly, the one that we know the least about, is Tigh nam Calliach, The House of the Old Woman, a ritual miniature stone hut with a turf roof, in a remote glen, north-west of Loch Lyon. By good fortune I recently met Norman Haddow, who led a party to repair the Tigh in 2012…"

There is much more about this project desribed in Mr Finlays blog at

1 comment:

  1. John,
    You may want to advise your collegues that the gardeners there don't spoil the intent like they did when cutting the perimeter trees at the Goldsworthy installation.
    If I understand the definition of 'wilding garden" it's intended to not look 'manicured' but rather blend into the space by letting nature have it's way there. It's really beautiful and the sentiment and execution are fantastic. Bob W.