Virtual Symposium : Imagining an Island

Imagining an Island has developed as a Symposium, two accompanying exhibitions – In This Day and Age, Ecognosis – and an Open Call exhibition.

Taigh Chearsabhagh Museum and Art centre

Open Call  virtual exhibition is now live (in Room 1Room 2, and Room 3).

Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, the symposium will now be virtual and will take place as a live online event on the 25th and 26th September 2020. Registration available soon.


A two-day Symposium, in collaboration with University of the Highlands & Islands, Centre for Rural Creativity and the Art School at UHI, North Uist, in Scotland’s Outer Hebrides, foregrounding Contemporary Landscape Practices in Photography and Film.

The Symposium, Imagining an Island, is based on the Isle of North Uist in the Outer Hebrides.  

Scolpaig ©Kippin&Neate

An island is a singular place, its boundaries are clearly defined. It is both a microcosm of the World and a philosophical idea. It is a place that invites departure and return and it is a place that engages our imagination whilst continually inspiring re-definition. How have artists responded to these concepts, and how can we further engage with, and develop our understanding of these ideas through Arts Practice?  

Rosie and Raphael ©Kippin&Neate

Using a range of approaches with Contemporary Artists working in Photography and Film, this event will explore the inter-connectedness between people and places, and ask how this is changing and offering new perspectives, due to newly developed technologies and the availability of virtual communication. The Symposium will address our assumptions around identity, belonging, culture and citizenship along with questioning the development of new identities as a result of global diaspora. 

Launch, Baleshare Beach, North Uist ©Kippin&Neate

We will be exploring Contemporary Rural Life, moving away from the prevalent idealised and nostalgic representations, questioning who is defining and shaping the culture and landscape today, and assessing how artists responses to these new practices sit within more conventional and historic frameworks.  

Proposed CONTRIBUTORS to include (subject to confirmation)

Amund Bentsen’s and Benjamin Skop : Professor John Kippin and Nicola Neate : Rosie Blake : Robin Gillanders: Professor Fraser MacDonald : Professor Keith McIntyre : Professor Ysanne Holt : Andy Mackinnon : Professor Hugh Cheape : Maya Darrell-Hewins : Roxane Permar : Neil Simco 

Exhibitions by John Kippin and Nicola Neate; Amund Bentsen and Benjamin Skop together with an open photographic exhibition curated by Rosie Blake will be open during the Symposium. There will be film showings and performance events curated by Andy Mackinnon included in the programme.