ROTHESAY - A PLACE IN CANADA                                                                                   Click on thumbnails in gallery below to view larger image

I have had the privilege of documenting both Rothesay, New Brunswick, Canada and Rothesay, Isle of Bute, Scotland. And it is in the sounds and the images of the places, the smells and the textures, that their stories are told.

Many in Canada ask if their Rothesay is like the other Rothesay in Scotland. They ask if the hills across the Kennebecasis River are reminiscent of the view from Rothesay Bay. There may be a few overlaps of similarity; the big old houses built as holiday homes for the city folk, or the warm and welcoming nature of the people, but the sensory contrasts between the two places are my greater observation. And this is only natural. The towns emerge from their individual pasts. They are molded and woven by the intricacies of the people who have passed their way, the landscapes and locations and the interaction between all three. From this the culture evolves. And though the people of the past may now be mere mists above the water, an impression of each one of them is an intrinsic piece of today’s story.

In my Rothesay soundscape I include Anthem for the Wind and Water by local Rothesay, Canadian composer, Jim Stuart, inspired by the immigration ship, Marco Polo. This music conveys a certain sadness of the loss and displacement that I feel in the “New Countries”, not only for the original inhabitants, but also for those who leave their homelands and loved ones to arrive in a new land. Yet in the way that a butterfly is drawn to a flower, people find a way to draw together again in the essence of connectedness intrinsic to human wellbeing. They reshape their land in a way that reflects their new culture. They form their sense of place, a cultural identity evolves, and a connection to a new community is forged. Within this, we must always remember the original inhabitants of the lands.

The exhibition was a commission by "This is Who We Are" through Scottish Year of Homecoming. It consists of two digital slide shows and two soundscapes.

Figure Skating
School's Out

web design (C) 2010-15 Mike Meade   all audio, images, videos and writings (C) 2010-17 Judith Parrott