2011 Expedition

Scottish Islands Expedition

15 July - 12 Aug 2011

This July Cape Farewell marks its 10th anniversary and embarks on its biggest project yet, in partnership with Cove Park: a four-week expedition by boat across the western isles of Scotland. After 10 years exploring distant environments (Arctic and Andes), Cape Farewell brings its focus to local frontiers, to investigate climate impacts closer to home and engage with inspiring models of resilience and adaptation.

The engagement begins with 4, week-long voyages (15 July - 12 August 2011) across the Scottish islands, each with a crew of up to 12 artists and scientists. Travelling on a marine mammal research vessel, the Song of the Whale, from Oban via the Small Isles, Skye and the Inner and Outer Hebrides to St Kilda, Harris, Lewis and the Shiants, the journey will explore the impact of climate change on island cultures and ecologies, and investigate stewardship projects which are revitalising the relationship between communities and their contexts.

The Scottish Islands Project seeks to bring many forms of knowledge – traditional, technical, cultural, scientific and common – together, with the aim of learning and communicating more widely what it means to care for one's 'place'. What actions and decisions are involved in good stewardship? What notions of community, needs and limits form the basis for local agency, and how can they be expressed in both physical and symbolic forms?

The expedition crew of 40 includes island artists, storytellers, film makers, playwrights, architects, designers, musicians, community leaders, social scientists, ecologists, marine biologists, oceanographers, poets, acclaimed Gaelic singers and a chef.

Visit the expedition blog ›
Download press release ›

Crew members will share their experience via daily posts to the Scottish Expedition website. Explore the route, get to know the voyagers and keep in touch with us by adding your comments to the posts. All posts, images and videos will be available via RSS feeds. Also follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

We are working together with a wide range of amazing institutions, organisations and communities: Cove Park, National Oceanography Centre, Scottish Association for Marine Science, International Centre for Island Technology, Scottish National Heritage, Comhairle Nan Eilean Siar, Storas Uibhist, Barra & Vatersay, Eigg Heritage Trust, Global Islands Network, University of Western Scotland, University of the Highlands and Islands, Sabhal Mor Ostaig, An Tobar, An Lanntair, Taigh Chearsabhagh, Historic Scotland, Siar FM, National Trust for Scotland, Canna Community Association, RSPB Balranald, Machair Life and SEALL Arts.

And many thanks for the support of Creative Scotland, Arts Council England, The Bromley Trust, Eden Project and Lighthouse Foundation.

Next: Sea Change

Cape Farewell's Sea Change is a four-year programme of research and making across Scotland’s western and northern isles that has grown out of the gathering at Cove Park in 2010, and the Scottish Islands Expedition in 2011. Sea Change involves over 30 UK and international artists and scientists, working collaboratively and independently to consider the relationships between people, places and resources in the context of climate change. Part of the London 2012 Festival and the Year of Creative Scotland, the project will culminate during the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games.
Find out more ›