Scholars Rocks - Milton of Campsie
Located across rural sites, the highly glazed, hand built ceramic ‘rocks’ make visual and physical connections to East Dunbartonshire geology, landscapes and industries that once utilised resources provided by the landscape. Rachel’s practice often incorporates walking with local experts to understand a landscape through someone else’s eyes, knowledge and expertise. On this occasion she walked with a local geographer and geologist. Through this engagement she was introduced to the geology of the area particularly the Lime burning and abandoned kilns of the late 18th Century that are scattered in the landscape. Now overgrown and reclaimed by nature the kiln sites are invisible to all but the trained eye. Lime was burned off on site in these outdoor kilns to provide mineral lime for a wide range of industrial, agricultural and chemical processes. The work subtly acknowledges these natural resources that influenced the industrial history of East Dunbartonshire while referencing the cultural heritage of the clay and ceramics making in the area. Further inspiration came from ceramic artefacts of the area – Medieval and Roman pottery, as well as more recent Allander Pottery and Campsie Ware. These influenced the colourful glaze effects, which, were combined with a unique home-made glaze created by grinding lime-kiln waste that was collected in the landscape. The works act as way-finding and reflective points in the landscape.